10-minute grace period for parking tickets to be put to a first-hand test
I am about to find out how much trouble it is to cancel a parking ticket issued within 10 minutes of the expiry of the purchased time.
The Star recently reported that city council wants to make it better known that drivers issued a parking tag within 10 minutes of the time on the pay-and-display ticket are eligible to have it cancelled, a rule change made last July.
We questioned in our blog last week why parking enforcement officers are not instructed to hold off on a ticket until 10 minutes after the time expires, instead of making people go to one of four city offices and stand in line to get it cancelled.
It turns out that parking enforcement has been asked to observe the 10-minute mercy rule in the issuing of tickets, but won’t unless ordered to.
The fact that no such order has been made suggests the city is not nearly as interested in extending the break as it is in collecting revenue from those who are eligible to cancel a ticket, but can’t be bothered or don’t have the time.
All of this took on a bit more meaning for me today, when I returned to my car, parked on Mutual St., to find a $30 ticket for “fail to deposit fee in machine,” which was not quite true.
I put $1.50 into the machine that issues pay-and-display dashboard tickets – good for 30 minutes of parking – which expired at 4.12 p.m.
I returned about 40 minutes later and found a ticket issued at 4.20 p.m., eight minutes after the time expired, which had me thinking it would be much easier – and reflect the spirit of the grace period - if the parking cop had just kept on going.
If he’d returned five minutes later, a mere three minutes beyond the grace period, I would have no choice but to pay the fine.
But the ticket was a waste of time, since I intend to have it cancelled, which underscores why it would be better for everyone of parking enforcement was ordered not to issue tickets until 10 minutes after the time expires.