Brooklyn Boro

Councilman cracks down hard on parking violators

"Curb space is public space."

June 23, 2023 Brooklyn Eagle Staff
Councilmember Lincoln Restler.
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BROOKLYN — Councilmember Lincoln Restler introduced legislation on Friday to strengthen penalties for violating Alternate Side Parking rules. Under the legislation, fines would increase over a 12-month period. The initial violation would result in the current $65 fee, the second and third violations would result in a $100 fee, and after the fourth violation in a year, the vehicle would be towed. Councilmember Restler strongly supports these fines being based on income levels.

Street cleanliness is a top quality of life issue for constituents citywide. In 2022, there were more than 8,000 complaints made to 311 about inadequate street sweeping, and 57% of the complaints came from Brooklyn. In 2022, there were an additional 4,264 complaints made about dirty streets to 311, up 109% from 2021.

“Our streets are not getting cleaned, and it’s because it’s cheaper for New Yorkers to pay for occasional alternate side parking tickets than it is to park their cars in a garage,” said Councilmember Lincoln Restler. “We need to raise the costs of alternate side parking violation fees and encourage car owners to do their part in keeping our streets clean.”

“For some, receiving tickets for alternate side parking is viewed as a ‘cost of doing business,’ with many car owners opting to pay a fine rather than pay for legal parking,” said Councilmember Erik Bottcher. “When this happens, streets don’t get cleaned. I am proud to co-sponsor this bill with my colleague Councilmember Lincoln Restler and believe it will help incentivize people to obey the rules and move their cars. I look forward to working with my colleagues to progress this bill through the legislative process.”

“Curb space is public space, but right now many drivers feel entitled to permanently store their cars there,” said Sara Lind, Co-Executive Director at Open Plans. “This not only blocks vital sanitation services but encourages a car-centric use of public space that breeds a whole host of other harmful issues on our streets. Escalating fines for repeat offenders is a smart way to shift that culture and change driver behavior to ensure our curbs can work as intended.”

“Alternate side parking keeps the streets clean to the benefit of all neighbors,” said Howard Kolins, President of the Boerum Hill Association. “Too many car owners are ignoring ASP rules, so I’m grateful to Councilmember Restler for introducing this legislation to clean up our streets.”

When Alternate Side Parking was first introduced in August 1950,  cars would often be towed and $15 fines were levied for violations plus a $10 fee to release the vehicle. According to Curbed, that would total more than $300 in 2022.

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