Inflation Eating Into Unpaid Fines

A legislative report shows the value of court fines in Tennessee has been eroded by inflation, but some say it’s academic.

A legislative staff report released last week notes the cost of most fines was established when the stage criminal code was revamped in 1989.

But Knox County prosecutor Randy Nichols told The Knoxville News Sentinel the amount of a fine doesn’t make any difference if it isn’t paid anyway .

The review follows this year’s enactment of a statute that allows for the revocation of driver’s licenses in the case of unpaid fines. The statute was passed after Chief Deputy Criminal Court Clerk Tommy Bradley in Davidson County estimated unpaid fines over the last 22 years total more than $1 billion.