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Operation Green Light Puts Drivers Back On The Road

Woman stands at the front of the Pinellas County Clerk front office counter.
Qualified participants who pay their debts, or go on a monthly payment plan, will be able to reinstate their suspended driver license. Courtesy: Tampa Bay Newswire

Pinellas County is offering people with outstanding traffic and court fees a chance to pay it off at a discount.

Operation Green Light is taking place at the Pinellas County Justice Center on Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday (Oct. 16, 17 and 19). Officials say it lends a hand to thousands of people with overdue fines by offering a discount and setting up payment plans.

“If you have a Pinellas County court or traffic fine that has been sent over to collections due to non-payment, this is definitely something that you should look into to see if you're eligible to save up to 25% on the collection fees,” said Vanessa Castrogiovanni, communications coordinator for the Pinellas County Clerk of the Court.


Castrogiovanni said people who have received traffic or court fines in Pinellas County but don’t live there also can benefit from this opportunity.


“Anyone who has cases in Pinellas County can take advantage of the Operation Green Light,” said Castrogiovanni. “It really has to do with where your cases are located.”


According to the program, people who pay off their fines or start a payment plan will be able to reinstate their suspended driver's license. There also is a one-time, state-mandated charge of $25. 


There are restrictions, including: those with licenses suspended because of failure to pay child support; DUI; failure to complete a driver’s course; traffic-related felony; or people deemed as habitual traffic offender by the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles.


The department will be at the Pinellas event on Wednesday and Thursday with the Florida Licensing On Wheels vehicle. It prints new licenses on site. 


Participants will save on overall fees during this event, but a 3.5 percent convenience charge will still be applied to all credit and debit card payments. 


“Payments will be accepted by cash, check and money order, which can definitely continue to expand the savings,” said Castrogiovanni. 


Operation Green Light is first-come, first-served event and appointments won’t be available. 


Other Clerk of Court offices around Florida also will participate in Operation Green Light. Check the Florida Court Clerks and Comptrollers website for specific dates and times. 


Pinellas: October 16 and 17 8:30 a.m. - 7 p.m. and October 19 8:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.

Citrus: October 14 through October 18 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Hardee: October 15 through October 17 3:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.

Manatee: October 14 through October 18 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Polk: October 14 through October 18 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. and October 19 9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.


Erin O’Brien is a WUSF/USF Zimmerman School digital news intern for summer 2019.
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