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I’m against the punitive enforcement of parking laws.

I don’t think parking enforcement officers should write tickets five minutes before the meters are free at 6 p.m. I don’t think they should write tickets a couple minutes after a meter expires. I don’t think people who get home from work at 5:50 p.m. should be forced to park on one side of the street for ten minutes and then come back outside and move their cars ten minutes later to the other side of the street.

But people get tickets all the time for this stuff.

Some say, “Rules are rules!” Let’s remember why we have parking enforcement: safety, turnover and revenue. There has to be room for common sense and there should be respect for residents and visitors.

Syracuse has a 10-minute grace period from when your meter expires. Some cities allow free parking for the first 15-20 minutes at a meter to help people making quick errands and getting lunch takeout.

Rochester should explore a program that has a little more flexibility. It might go a long way in fostering goodwill among citizens who are steamed about red light cameras and rampant ticket-fixing by police officers.

Links of the Day:

– Sounds like the City of Rochester tried to get rid of a parking official by honing in on two fixed tickets. One problem – everyone’s doing it, even the guy who brought her up on ethics charges.

– A teen’s car got wedged underneath a school bus in a serious crash in Brighton. An underguard may have prevented it.

– An Orleans County nun is charged with stealing $100,000 from two churches to support her gambling addiction.

Hey, want to buy an island on the Erie Canal?

10 Responses to Parking Grace

  1. November 5, 2012 at 8:55 am lellingw responds:

    Basically the parking problem and fines if you park in a spot you can’t park in, is a big reason people don’t want to work in the city. In the end, people just don’t feel welcome there.

  2. I have a friend who challenged the sparking violation enforcement system in city court relative to his unpaid parking tickets mostly gotten on the streets near the Public Market and out in front of his natural food diner on Gregory St. in the S. Wedge.

    At the market he would be buying stores for his restaurant. At the restaurant he would be loading and unloading stores and other supplies at a corner location on a street with alternate parking and often no available spots due to tenant and customer parking.

    He went into court and used the arguement that the ticket summons were unconstitutional in that they did not follow due process especially relative to the type and method of “service” used and the inability to distinguish a “violation,” “misdemeanor” and “crime” from one another along the way.

    He got their attention and after a few spells at city lock-up, they started to tire of his act and let him go.

    He characterized the parking ticket violation process at “confiscatory” and “justice by mail.”

  3. I couldn’t agree with you more. Parking tickets are certainly a reason I stay away from the city as much as possible. As for this “ticket fixing” scandal, I find it laughable that it is the headline story. I think it illustrates the parking difficulties in downtown Rochester. Even the police and city employees can’t find a place to park that doesn’t have a sign restricting the use of an open space to park. Luckily for them, they can get their ticket voided. For the people who don’t have a relative on the city payroll, we are stuck paying the $35 fine. Hopefully, more businesses and entertainment will move out of the city. I think it’s great that the basketball team is moving to the dome. Maybe the soccer and eventually the Amerks will follow.

  4. I agree that there needs to be more flexibility with City of Rochester parking. There is a system in place at the University of Rochester that might work on city streets as well. There are spaces at the U of R that allow for 15-minute parking, as long as flashers are left on. This is perfect for persons who have quick transactions or errands to take care of. Metered-parking in downtown Rochester could be facilitated in a similar manner, with designated spots for quick transactions.

    Concerning tickets issued to persons for parking beyond their paid allotments, I believe there should be a grace period of at least ten minutes, because I do believe that most persons are honest, and do try to return to their cars before parking times expire.

  5. In old downtown Pittsburgh they have parking meters with quarter slots that you turn a dial on to deposit the quarter.

    It is customary to deposit one quarter for a maximum 30mins of parking and leave another one in the slot for the parking meter monitor to dial-in for you to get another 30min.

    But, that’s a broad-shouldered city with a heart which doesn’t despise its citizenry no matter where they come from.

  6. The problem is how predatory the city is, and how they use parking as revenue. Writing tickets for meters that are 10 minutes past, going around at 5:50 to catch people before the parking is free, and other tactics are what makes people unhappy. That being said, on some streets there are horrible parking violators that needs to be addressed because they block the street and hamper emergency vehicles.

  7. November 5, 2012 at 12:50 pm Havahd St responds:

    “- A teen’s car got wedged underneath a school bus in a serious crash in Brighton. An underguard may have prevented it.”
    Also, not speeding and paying attention to the road could have prevented it.

  8. November 5, 2012 at 12:51 pm Eduardo Ricardo responds:

    Not having .35 cents results in a $35 (and increasing) fine.

    I don’t know how or why this hasn’t been outlawed.

  9. November 5, 2012 at 12:54 pm Eduardo Ricardo responds:

    Whoever is responsible for this needs to resign. Or even better, fired.

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