10/24/2005Australia: Top Mayor Admits Motorists are Simply a Revenue Source
The head of a mayor's association in Australia admits that parking tickets are used to balance the budget.
The head of Australia's Local Government Association, Genia McCaffery, defended the practice of hiring additional meter maids to help balance city budgets. McCaffery explained to the Sydney Daily Telegraph that mayors must turn to motorists as a source of revenue when the budget gets tight.
"If you were running a household budget and income keeps on declining and costs keep increasing then something has to give somewhere," McCaffery said. "People need to look at alternative sources of revenue."
McCaffery defended Sydney's practice of hiring additional meter maids to boost parking tickets by 60 percent to 1,063,945 and revenue from A$59.8 million in the last fiscal year to A$94.7 million in the latest figures. McCaffery is mayor of North Sydney. Several suburbs beyond Sydney such as Wollongong, Southerland Shire, Byron and Newcastle have tripled or doubled their ticket profit.
Balmain Spit Roast proprietor Manfred Freinkel watched a number of cars getting fines every day in the 15-minute parking meter spots outside his Darling St premises. "It's out of control, 100 per cent out of control," Mr Freinkel said. "They ticket people when it rains, they ticket people at 10am in the morning even when no other cars are around," he said.Source: Parking fine fury (Daily Telegraph (Sydney, Australia), 10/24/2005)
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