According to Cartersville Police Chief Thomas Culpepper, the city's speed detection permit expired on Dec. 31, so all tickets written in the city from Jan. 1 to Feb. 1 will be refunded.
Culpepper told the Cartersville City Council Thursday night that a letter from the Department of Public Safety to renew the permit was sent out, but since it wasn't addressed to him, he did not receive it in time.
Culpepper requested that Mayor Matt Santini sign the renewal letter as soon as possible so the document can be returned to the DPS. The city's permit is up for renewal ever four to five years.
"This is a time-sensitive issue," Culpepper told the council.
He added that officers will not issue tickets based on speed until the DPS receives the paperwork.
"We will refund anything under a speed violation," Culpepper said, adding the department will contact drivers who received tickets. "We will dismiss the ticket or refund the money if they have already paid."
Capt. J.F. Cline said the dollar amount of the 85 tickets to be dismissed is not known because funds have not been collected.
City Attorney David Archer said legally the city isn't required to refund the money but felt it was the right thing to do.
Santini offered his support for the decision, which he said was Culpepper's.
In other council news:
* The city's April 21 meeting time has been changed from 7 p.m. to 9 a.m. to allow area students to participate in the annual Civic Youth Day.
* A request to terminate the current Yard Waste Disposal Contract and go with another by April 1 was brought before the council. Currently, the department is using Crane Grading at a price of $8.50 per ton. The new contract will save the city $20,000 to $30,000 per year.
* Approval for the National Research Center to conduct a survey for the city at a cost of $11,750 was requested.
The survey is done every two years and is a tool used to gauge residents' opinions on services and key policy issues.