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LA: Council moves forward with raising fees for convicted sex offenders

Sulphur, LA – Currently, any convicted sex offender who moves into the city pays a $60 fee for their initial registration. That same amount is charged for the annual renewals of those already living in Sulphur. If passed, the new ordinance, according to Councilman Stuart Moss, would make the initial registration $600 and the annual renewal fee $200. Full Article

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  1. Anonymous Nobody

    Someone should challenge ANY fee for registration. They can’t REQUIRE you to register, yet if you refuse to pay a fee, deny you the ability to register — and then arrest you for not registering. Surely requiring a fee is just as punitive as fining you; if a fine is punitive how can a fee not be punitive?

    There was another mention on the site recently about another place that also charged a fee for registering.

    I would think it also would be unfair to all the other municipalities in the state — as such a fee clearly will cause registrants to go live in a different town instead, which is probably the real reason for the fee. Surely the fee should be declared a subterfuge of the state law and of the stated intent of SOR everywhere.

    • Bluewall

      I am against anything doing with “Forever Fees.” First off once punishment is completed no fees can be asserted by the law, anything after that is the burden of the justice department (state, city, federal). They accepted the responsibility of making laws and registration, therefore they should accept paying the financial burdens.. You don’t see “Fees” placed on arsonists and drug registrants… enuf said….

  2. td777

    What would it take to get this labeled as “Taxation without representation?” Also, has anyone ever considered what happens for someone who cannot afford to pay this, whether from being unemployed, trying to support a family, etc? And what if someone is homeless and having to register every month? Are they really going to be expected to pay $200 per month when they are homeless???

    One of the lines that showed how ridiculous this is was “the offender should bear the burden of the extra cost for compliance checks.” Unless I don’t know something about Louisiana law, compliance checks are not required by law and are simply something optional for local law enforcement. To require a registrant to foot the bill for something law enforcement elects to do is just completely unacceptable.

    • Joe

      The proposal calls for an annual fee, not one that is due at every registration visit if that is required in excess of one per year.

      Regardless, a FEE is something you elect to pay in exchange for a service or license. Like my car registration, Price Club membership (!) or drivers license.

      A required payment due to a past criminal offense, failure / refusal of which to pay being subject to criminal prosecution, is a FINE and as such a PUNISHMENT – as handed down at sentencing.

      Any FINE imposed outside / after sentencing is EX POST FACTO and, as such, UNCONSTITUTIONAL.

      Logic is fun.

      At some point, the camel’s back gotta break. The question is when. Or the camel will have to morph into some other creature, one that is no longer defined by its humps or metaphorically, the Constitution, which it seems to be well on its way to be doing.

  3. alert

    Moss stated that with the Sulphur Police Department moving toward their own monitoring program for sex offenders, there will be added costs to the department for such items as training, equipment, and overtime hours worked, among other expenses. In his opinion, the offender should bear the burden of the extra cost for compliance checks, not the taxpayer.
    “I’m trying to make sure they are doing what needs to be done. Our officers are supposed to be out there checking on them, and we don’t have that in place,” said Moss. “We need to do this. We need to be proactive.”
    SPD chief Lewis Coats offered his support for the increase in fees.
    “I don’t think the registered sex offender needs to pay our salary, but I do think they should supplement my budget for the payment of overtime [and other expenses] for my officers to go out there and do spot compliance checks,” said the chief.

    The trouble with this type of news article is that it one sided.
    How can the public, the tax payers, and the voters even begin to understand the arguments against this ridiculous proposal without hearing “the other side”?

    The only half baked question came from Sulphur resident Randy Hebert who liberally attached the term “Criminals” to a group of unfortunate registrants striving to live honest and productive lives, just like the rest of society
    To be a criminal is to be actively engaged in criminal activity-duh!

    With a recidivism rate below 2% how in the world can any reasonable city official and police chief justify wasting so much police power, training, new equipment and over time trying to control law abiding citizens.
    Something really smells fishy here. To me it sounds as if they’re wanting to beef up their police dept. and are using “Compliance” checks as cash tool.
    Running a compliance check is not rocket science and doesn’t require over 10 minutes of training, doesn’t need to be done on overtime, with special equipment, and etc.

    Clearly, the city should be aware that there are many more serious crime problems that need attending to.
    Questions should be asked and answered!

  4. Joe

    The public wants – no, demands – the registry. The public should pay for it. End of story.

  5. Brubaker

    The article reads like a Smokey and the Bandit movie script with the southern drawl speak like Buford T Justice (Jackie Gleason)…………it works in a movie NOT real life….someones nitwit idea to fee will cost their taxpayers millions a dollars and should cause to end present listed off……get er done.

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