2/27/2006New York City: Holiday Parking Ticket Trap
New York City, New York police are meeting ticket quotas by ticketing those parked legally on holidays.
A New York City, New York resident is fighting an uphill battle against a parking ticket he should never have received. On December 26, 2005 -- a recognized city holiday -- Edward Goldman was given a $65 ticket on 8th Avenue in a zone marked for no parking during weekdays. Under city law, weekday restrictions do not apply to city holidays. Goldman proceeded to write the city Department of Transportation to contest the ticket. The department wrote that it would cut the amount of the ticket down to just $43, an offer Goldman refused.
"I don't want the city to be able to hoodwink people and blatantly get money they are not entitled to," Goldman told WCBS-TV.
The New York City Office of Collective Bargaining confirmed in a ruling last month that the city police employ an illegal "summons quota for traffic violations in the precinct and by penalizing officers for failing to meet the stated number of traffic citations." With only a few days left in the month, the police officer who ticketed Goldman could have ticketed dozens of legally parked vehicles, leaving the car owners with little recourse, in order to meet his monthly "perfomance standards." Goldman's case was not isolated.
"A lot of people were getting tickets on that day that didn't deserve tickets, so something is going on," former city traffic commissioner Sam Schwartz told WCBS. "If it's an officer that's trying to make up for inactivity earlier in the month and suddenly has to produce some summonses, and writes what we used to call... garbage summonses."
Goldman must now appeal his case to an administrative law judge.