Thu. May 26th, 2022

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The ACT government moves like God in mysterious ways. Without explanation, it has suddenly canceled speeding tickets for a church leader and his colleagues after the pastor started a campaign against the punishments. Father Tony Percy was caught (or not, as it now turns out) in driving 47 kilometers per hour down Northbourne Avenue, well within the former 60km / h limit. The pastor, who is the vicar general of the Archdiocese of Canberra and Goulburn, offered to donate the money to a homeless shelter if the ACT government dropped the fine. And look and see, without any explanation, he received a letter stating that the punishment was invalid “for technical reasons”. The punishment for another priest and a colleague was also abandoned. More than 15,000 people were caught after they could not detect that the limit from 60 km / h to 40 km / h had been lowered even though the new limit was signposted. The fine annoyed Father Percy somewhat, so he sent the challenge to the ACT government in hopes of getting something good for others out of the controversy – he called it “speeding up to stop homelessness”. If the sentence were dropped, he would give the same amount to MacKillop House, which runs a service for 26 homeless women and their children, many of whom have sought refuge from men’s domestic violence. The offer – or challenge – was put in a letter that read: “I will with great pleasure and joy donate the equivalent of the fine to MacKillop House.” And the fine disappeared, leaving only a mystery. Was there a fault in the camera system? If so, many more motorists are likely to find forgiveness from fundraisers. Is there anyone in the ACT government who would rather have a talk with a publicity-savvy priest? In the first four days of the new, lower speed limit, the cameras recorded an average of 391 violations per day. Three drivers were each fined 12. In all, there were more than 27,000 speeding fines after motorists were caught (or not) by cameras on parts of Northbourne Avenue, London Circuit and Barry Drive. According to the ACT Government’s budget estimate, revenue from traffic fines is expected to be more than $ 32 million higher this year than previously expected. Our coverage of the health and safety aspects of this outbreak of COVID-19 in ACT and lockdown is free for all to access. However, we rely on subscription revenue to support our journalism. If you are able, sign up here. If you are already a subscriber, thank you for your support. You can also sign up for our newsletters for regular updates. Our journalists work hard to deliver local, up-to-date news to the community. Here’s how to continue accessing our trusted content:


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