BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) – Birmingham is aiming to reduce the effects of municipal fines and fees on residents, the city announced Thursday.

The city will join eight others in the Cities Addressing Fines and Fees Equitably (CAFFE) initiative spearheaded by the National League of Cities. 

The initiative will encourage peer learning opportunities and provide grant support to reform unfair policies in the court system.

“Birmingham’s inclusion in the CAFFE cohort allows us to draw on the knowledge of leaders from other progressive cities to establish programs that will directly benefit our friends and neighbors,” Birmingham Municipal Judge Andra Sparks said in a press release. 

The CAFFE program began in 2019, helping many cities implement strategies to reform how fines and fees impact low-income residents.

The seven other cities joining Birmingham are Dallas, Texas; Las Vegas, Nevada; Maywood, Illinois; Montgomery, Alabama; Pueblo, Colorado; St. Louis, Missouri; and Washington, D.C.