We didn’t know that a citizen awarded a parking ticket had any choice about how much it would cost. But today’s New York Times gives city drivers news they can use: if you agree not to contest the ticket, you get a rebate — $43 instead of $65. (Offer not good on fire hydrant violations.)
The city says it hasn’t publicized the super-saver fine because “this is offered to everyone universally,” and most offenders only find out about it when they apply to contest their tickets, at which time they are offered the lower price. This gives the city a double benefit: the overwhelming majority of ticketees pay the full fine, and many who seek to contest theirs are discouraged, allowing the city to cut back on parking judges.
What happens when this news gets around? A Finance Department spokesman says it’s unlikely that enough ticketed drivers would request the rebate to reach the “tipping point” that would get the city to rescind it. But with a massive ticket blitz on, citizens may wise up quickly.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on January 2, 2009