The simple fact is this: Governments have an incentive to write more tickets, says Thomas Garrett, an assistant vice president and economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, and a co-author of a recent study, "Red Ink in the Rearview Mirror: Local Fiscal Conditions and the Issuance of Traffic Tickets" (.pdf file). Garrett and his co-author, Gary Wagner, studied tickets issued by North Carolina counties over 14 years and found that "significantly more tickets are issued in the year following a decline in revenue."

I guess this is no big surprise.

Chip H.