Rural cops spared headache over “cannot connect to internet” notifications

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By Sterling Randle

SALT LAKE CITY—A bill that passed last year has put law enforcement in some counties in a pickle.

Police Officers on Motorcycles may not always carry their laptops. Photo Credit: I, Daniel Schwen, Wikimedia Commons
Police Officers on Motorcycles may not always carry their laptops.
Photo Credit: Daniel Schwen, Wikimedia Commons

In some counties, like Sanpete, Wayne and Daggett, law enforcement was required to submit citations electronically. Sometimes these officers face, connectivity issues, as described by Rep. Jon Cox, R-Ephraim, making it impossible for some rural officers to submit reports.

HB85 titled Amendments to Electronic Filing of Traffic Citations and Accident Reports, passed through the Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice Standing Committee on Feb. 18, thus allowing law enforcement in counties with less than 31,000 people to file their citations in paper form only.

Previously officers have been double dipping by writing a paper ticket first then submitting their electronic version later. Not only is this redundant for the officers but it wastes taxpayer’s money.

For example, an officer on a bicycle at the Washington County Fair, who doesn’t have his laptop with him, would not have to worry about submitting a citation electronically.

Now, this amendment is for specific situations for rural officers could get into, but non-electronic submissions are becoming less common. Cox stated that only 30% of the citations issued in Sanpete could were paper submissions.

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