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RE: Engineering violations revisited

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So yeah, I can see the PE boards wanting to get more money from Fines.

That brings to mind a simple test to see if the PE boards are more interested in getting PEs to do what they should be doing verses having just another revenue stream that they do not have to be accountable for to their constituents:

If it cost more to enforce their regulations, statutes, etc. than they collect in fines and fees, then they are probably doing their mission.

If it costs less than what they are collecting, then its just another revenue stream and they are not interested in promoting good practice, despite the rhetoric. They want more violations. It also encourages boards to make the regulations as difficult to comprehend as possible and to use intimidation tactics that result in enhancing their profit.

Ideally budget wise, what they collect should equal what they expend. But its actually better if the voters have to kick in some general tax revenue (i.e. property, income, etc.) to make up for the gap between collections and revenues. Voters will do that if they believe their interests are being fairly protected by these boards.

Now what I haven't seen in a board newsletter is a report on what is being spent verses what they are collecting. And its not surprising that they don't openly publish this kind of information without having to be asked, which means that the charge that they are just another tax revenue stream is probably true.

Perhap after reading this post, they will start publishing such information. But there is a catch: the spending report should be detailed and clear enough to allow the public to audit and identify wasteful spending, and in that sense both the taxpayer and the regulated will get closer to getting their money's worth. So if these board members or their employees are living high on the hog, that practice will stop and violators will be miserable for the right reasons.

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