Cash Cow—Dismissed Motor Violations, But You STILL Pay Court Fees of $35!

[C]ommunities also are cashing in on traffic tickets.

Is it me...or does it seem that  “…communities also are cashing in on traffic tickets. Johnston, one of the most ticket-prone communities, generated a total of $446,560 in revenue. But that money is often split with the state. Take another example: Warwick, which produced in $238,609 in revenues from tickets, but was able to keep only $75,053 of that for itself, while the rest went to state coffers…” [http://www.golocalprov.com/news/rhode-islands-speed-traps/  8/2011]

But while small Parking tickets revenues are a giant cash cow for the city and considering the State needs to generate money to offset the budget, it should come as no surprise…but it DOES!  Here’s why…

[http://www.golocalprov.com/news/parking-tickets/ a  9/2011 ]    “category five fiscal hurricane,” they’re also worried their customers will be scared away, especially from downtown.

According to Jennifer Ortiz, who owns Extreme Cuts on Westminster Street, the city never informed businesses that it was going to start enforcing Saturday parking laws. She said she wasn’t aware until she received a ticket herself last weekend.

“There were no notifications, nobody knows what’s going on,” Ortiz said. “Being a business owner, you’d think they would tell me. You never know when they’re going to be giving tickets. It’s supposed to be 8am to 6pm, but you never know.”

Ortiz said her main concern is that on Saturdays, downtown is already quiet and if the city is going to be tagging more cars, many of her clients will search for other options.

“People that come to me on Saturdays come because they don’t want to deal with the craziness of the city during the week,” Ortiz said. “What’s the point of Saturday now?”

While I must say I love the Solar Powered concept of these payboxes and support GREEN thinking, how 21st century meets me the 40-something mom shows me that I am challenged on how to work these PAY BOXES?  Here is a great video on what I'm talking about in this attached news report:  http://www.theindychannel.com/news/27826018/detail.html (it is also shared that they offer Ambassadors to help pay the Pay Boxes, often found walking around and are available to help you).  I saw nothing of this in Providence.  Too bad they don't have a tutorial on the machine for "Dummies" or an "App" to ask in Providence.

Did you know, if you are working in an office building, and let's say you park your car on the street somewhere, yet you're at the top of one of these buildings, you can use your cell phone to … add time," – Very Cool!


To Raise Money, Providence Plans to Issue More Parking Tickets
The Providence Journal  (http://www.parking.org/publications/ipinsider-e-newsletter/may-10,-2011/parking-in-the-news.aspx )
May 1, 2011

To generate additional revenue, parking-enforcement officers will step up their efforts to ticket cars parked at expired meters or beyond posted time limits, Mayor Angel Taveras' administration announced Wednesday.

According to a news release, the parking regulations will be enforced from Monday to Saturday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Posted one-hour and two-hour parking limits will be enforced and drivers will have to feed the meter during the posted enforcement times.

Fully enforcing the city's parking ordinance has the potential to generate much-needed new revenue, the release said. Last year, parking meters generated $1.3 million, the administration said, and the city is losing at least 35 percent of its meter revenue annually due to under enforcement.

According to the release, full enforcement was made possible, in part, by the city's recent agreement with Public Employees Local 1033, which will create flexible work schedules for parking-enforcement officers without additional overtime. In the past, the city did not issue parking tickets on Saturdays and weekdays after about 3 p.m. to avoid overtime costs that would exceed the income generated by parking enforcement.

Drivers don't need to carry quarters in their pockets: the city offers a smart card that can be used to pay meters. The ProvPass parking card is available in $10 and $20 denominations. Users swipe the card in the meter when they arrive and when they leave. The meter calculates the amount of time used and deducts the appropriate amount from the card.

The ProvPass can be purchased at City Hall, the Public Safety Complex or at the downtown AAA office. In May, the city will expand and promote the program to make the cards more readily available.  (This is a great alternative too)

Does anyone know when or where it states in the law that if you were speeding or found of a parking violation, you fight it and prevail....WHY do you have to pay for $35 in Court Fees??????  This is just wrong! 

We hear of quota's and the like on pulling the innocents over and I realize this is not everyone, although town's like Johnston seem to come to mind, along with Pawtucket.  Recently I was rewarded with a $25 parking ticket, and if I don't pay within 14 days it goes up to $75.  Better than the credit card companies interest rate and 30 day collection.  Very impressive ~ NOT!

I took pictures as I often do when I know I am right and know the ticket was not justified.  BAM!!!  I quickly remembered from a previous battle, that if I do fight this and win, I still have to pay Court Fees of $35.  Well, this Polish girl learned something the first time and I am sending in my SCAM of a parking ticket for $25, and saving myself $10 plus aggravation. 

What has your experience been?  Do you think this practice is fair?

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Bob August 19, 2012 at 01:08 PM
My licence was suspended a couple of years ago because the traffic court judge forgot to ask me how I wanted to plea. The bailiffs do not allow you to say anything-it's the judges ruling. "Licence suspended for 30 days." A couple weeks later I was able to appeal the judges ruling, after paying $25 for a cassette tape which had recordings of the judges mistake, two Appellate judges immediately found his ruling to be inaccurate. I still had to pay court costs and the $25 for the cassette tape.
Dave August 19, 2012 at 01:17 PM
Good story Bob,crooks at the top get away with everything,little guy gets squashed like a bug.
Peter A. Filippi III August 24, 2012 at 10:18 PM
Suzanne, I’m running for mayor and if elected the days of endless violations will come to a halt as we consider alternatives in which we won’t have to right up anyone for minor violations to make payrolls, Republican Mayoral Candidate Peter A. Filippi III
Suzanne Arena August 25, 2012 at 01:30 PM
Exactly Bob, that's the point...you still have to pay! Stats, some people are saying they Judge or Court Appointee person can waive the Court fee....THEY DON"T. Maybe I don't smile as much as you do when I am inconvenience for the entire fiasco!
Suzanne Arena October 24, 2012 at 03:20 PM
I had a meeting last Friday with the Dir. of Spec Ed in Providence and 2 other parents were with me. We all put in quarters and carefully looked at the time. We came out with 10 minutes to spare and VOILA....a $25 ticket. Really crooked said Charlie Brown [you don't need to be a Brown Univ. scholar to figure this out!]


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