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Missouri lawmakers approve municipal court restrictions after Ferguson concerns

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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) – The Missouri Legislature has sent the governor a measure in response to concerns voiced by some residents in the St. Louis area following last summer’s fatal shooting of Michael Brown by a Ferguson police officer.

The bill passed Thursday would cap fines for minor traffic violations, set minimum standards for St. Louis County cities and regulate municipal court procedures.

Supporters of the measure say it will help restore trust in government and address the predatory revenue-generating policing practices detailed in a federal Justice Department report about Ferguson.

The bill lowers the percentage of revenue most cities can collect from traffic fines and fees from 30 percent to 20 percent. St. Louis County cities would be subject to a lower limit of 12.5 percent.