Fine em and Boot em

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Fine em and Boot em

This happens daily across the country. Merchants and employees take the best parking spots, and their customers have no place to park. Read all about It here.

I won’t rail on this, you’ve heard my comments before. However Mark has this to say about frequent parking violators:

This article is a good illustration of an issue that I’m not sure can be resolved as long as parking tickets are treated as non-moving violations.  There are a lot of people that treat the tickets and fines as “the cost of doing business”.  I remember a few years back in a discussion with a bank executive he stated that he always parked at a meter and never worried about a ticket if the time ran out, and if he did get one he just turned it in on his expense report.  It doesn’t take too many people with that type of attitude to make a market based parking management plan (curb pricing) ineffective.  I still say there should be some sort of impact on your driving privileges (DL points, insurance, etc) if you surpass “x” amount of parking tickets in a specified time frame.   

I’m not certain I agree with the driving privileges issue – however stronger enforcement would help. In London, they use the “boot”. If your car is booted, you have to go, in person, to their parking enforcement office that is inconveniently located at the end of one of the underground lines. It takes about an hour to get there. You then have to pay a fine and removal fee, and then you have to go back and await the officer who will remove the boot. Its time consuming, inconvenient, and costly. My guess is that Mark’s banker friend would think twice about not paying for parking if he ran the risk of a hefty fine AND having to spend the better part of a day getting his car back. People who don’t care about money do care about their time. If you criminalize parking by removing the driving privilidge or affecting one’s insurance, you probably also mean that you need a sworn officer to write the ticket, thus complicating enforcement in many cities.

JVH

John Van Horn

John Van Horn

2 Responses

  1. The problem with booting is that most of those ordinances are based on the number of “unpaid” violations. If it were established that if you recieved more than “x” amount of tickets in a specified time then, even if they were paid you would be subject to the boot then I definitely agree that could be effective.
    The issue isn’t money with a lot of these types of offenders, it is time. If an attorney’s billing rate is $300-$400/hr then a $50 boot fee versus is only worth 10 minutes or less (assuming they don’t bill it back to the client as an out of pocket expense). Same thing goes for many executives.
    I’m not talking about the waiter or waitress that is running late to work, for them the $’s are the issue and you would think that 1 or 2 tickets would sway them to change their habits. With this other class of parking scoflaws the $ approach isn’t going to have that much impact.
    I’m not sure about the sworn officer issue since it wouldn’t be a criminal offense, but it is an excellent point to consider. I’ll look into that aspect of it.

  2. As a follow up to the issue of non-sworn officers and writing tickets for a “criminalized act” it looks like that authority could be allocated in the same manner in which most states have allocated the authority to write parking tickets, by statute. At least it looks like there is nothing that would prevent it. In some states a non-sworn officer (community policing, auxilary officers) can issue traffic citations and even make arrests if working under the supervision of a sworn officer, but not if they are working independently. In Florida (Jacksonville) the Sheriff and the Police Union are currently in court over whether or not a community officer (non-sworn) can issue a ticket for a traffic violation and other minor offenses (vagrancy, etc) as a means of freeing up officers for more serious issues.
    It sound like it’s an issue that could be overcome. We’ll see what happens with the lawsuit in Jacksonville

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