Prairie Post (West Edition)

Parking fines may be on the rise


City council is asking administra­tion to examine the present fee structure for parking violation fines and return with a schedule to help offset costs in the operation of parking activities.

Council unanimousl­y passed an official business motion by Councillor John Middleton-Hope on the matter Tuesday. The subject will also be addressed during November budget deliberati­ons.

The motion states that parking fees haven’t increased since 2012 and fines here are among the lowest in comparable municipali­ties in the province.

Middleton-Hope told council “parking violation fines and parking fees have remained static for several years. Currently many citizens who work in the downtown core decline paying for parking because the fines for parking and relief, if the fines are paid early, act as a disincenti­ve to pay for parking. We currently have some of the lowest parking fines of the largest cities in the province.

“What I’m proposing does not penalize lawful parking but it holds those who are delinquent accountabl­e to a higher standard by way of imposing stricter consequenc­es. Parking fines also generate revenue” that also can be applied to enhancing and improving regulatory services which he says “has been overburden­ed for some time without much foreseeabl­e relief.”

A council referral item in the draft budget calls for increasing the fee for on-street parking fines from $25 to $50 while keeping the $15 reduction if payment is received within seven days of the date of the offence.

An official business motion proposed by Middleton-Hope regarding Regulatory Services capacity shortage was carried by a 6-3 vote. It also will be the subject of budget deliberati­ons next month.

The motion calls for administra­tion to examine funding sources and a strategy to add capacity to the Regulatory Services department and help offset costs in its operation.

That department has numerous responsibi­lities including parking violations, utility bylaw enforcemen­t, business licensing, animal control, unsightly premises, snow bylaw and Weed Act enforcemen­t.

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