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Published: Monday, 5/3/2010

Maumee court extends amnesty on fines, costs

Maumee Municipal Court's amnesty program for people who owe fines and costs has been extended through May.

The program, introduced by Judge Gary Byers in February, offers a reduced settlement option to defendants whose cases have gone to warrant for failure to pay fines and costs.

It has brought in $30,000 and closed cases for about 180 people so far.

The court is accepting one-half of the original fine amount and all of the original court costs and is waiving any additional costs, such as warrant fees, for cases before 2009. For recent cases, only the additional warrant fees are being waived.

After payment is received, the court closes the case as to the fine and costs.

Judge Byers extended the amnesty deadline from April 30 to May 31 because of the program's success.

In addition to bringing money into the court, the program gives defendants the chance to get out from under a debt during tough economic times, the judge said when he created the amnesty program.

Defendants can contact the court to make arrangements for payment, and they will not be arrested for owing fines and costs to the court.

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