Major loss: Parking services fails to collect up to 50 percent of parking tickets
November 1, 2011
Parking regulations at the College of William and Mary may seem strict, but many campus parking violations go unpunished. As much as $31,390 in tickets issued between Jan. 1 and Aug. 22, 2011, the spring and summer academic terms, remain unpaid.
“It varies from year to year; it has been as high as 50 percent,” Director of Parking and Transportation Services Bill Horacio said.
Horacio explained how his department handles unpaid parking tickets.
“The process starts with issue of a statement. After 30 days when citations remain unpaid we apply an administrative hold on a student’s banner account for the unpaid balance,” Horacio said.
Consequences become harsher if payment is not received.
“If the balance remains unpaid beyond that time frame then the individual eventually becomes eligible for a wheel lock,” Horacio said. “In severe cases we will process payroll deductions, tax set-offs and, if necessary, remit to Finance for third party collection. Finally, loss of parking privileges, members with an outstanding balance are restricted from renewing their vehicle registration until all debts are satisfied.”
These methods cannot be applied for some of the violations. From the spring and summer terms, more than 150 non-decal tickets were issued but remain unpaid.
Parking services maintains that parking decal prices are not affected by the revenue lost for Parking and Transportation Services. Horacio rebuked the notion that officers dispense tickets in order to meet a quota.
“No, decal revenue goals are derived from the collective sum of our debt service, departmental operating costs, maintenance and upkeep of signs, lots and facilities,” he said. “Citation revenue, while factored as a part of the budget during the planning phase, is not a critical portion of the parking budget. If the citations remain unpaid we will still be sable to make our budgetary goals.Approximately 55 percent of citations are paid on time, leaving the balance to carry over from semester to semester. We write the citations as they occur; there are no quotas or expectations place on our officers.”
Assistant Manager of Parking and Transportation Services Penny Mayton confirmed Horacio’s assessment.
“Decal prices are separate from ticket revenues,” she said.
Jack Brorsen ’13, who has received parking tickets on campus, was receptive to the idea that parking decal prices are unrelated to the number of unpaid parking tickets.
“Yeah, from my perception anyway,” he said regarding the issue.