By the numbers: parking citations

By Walter Hickey

Making a parking mistake is expensive at the College of William and Mary, but some spaces are more likely to be costly than others. Analysis of parking citation data from Jan. 1, 2011 through Sept. 15, 2011 yielded findings about ticket hot spots.

The data, obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request, indicates the location, cost, type and payment status of each citation. So far in 2011, William and Mary parking services has issued 6,421 tickets on campus. Of that number, 3,786 cost some amount of money, while 2,635 were warnings or other citations that did not have any cost.

Tickets were most commonly issued in the parking lot in front of the Muscarelle Museum of Art and Morton Hall, where 769 citations were given. Landrum Drive, the parking deck, and the Marshall-Wythe School of Law and Stadium Drive parking lots were the next most popular citation places, with 688, 431, 422 and 366 tickets issued, respectively. Those five lots were responsible for $81,226 worth of tickets, close to 40 percent of the $203,250 total charged.

Many tickets were neither paid, nor appealed nor voided. In essence, these tickets were unenforced, and parking services did not collect the fee. The net amount of the unpaid tickets issued prior to Aug. 22, the start of the current semester, comes to $31,390 out of a total $165,856 charged. Of the 3,133 tickets issued in the spring and summer of 2011 that were not merely warnings, 414 were not paid.
Parking Services made $127,823 from parking tickets during this time.

The most common type of ticket with a monetary fee was a reserved space violation, accounting for 1,664 tickets. This violation costs $10 for the first offense, $30 for the second and $50 for third and subsequent offenses.

The next most common type of ticket was a no-decal or temporary pass violation for vehicles without College parking passes, accounting for 809 tickets. Those violations cost $161 or $170 depending on the circumstances.

The third most common ticket, coming in at 290 tickets, was the expired meter citation, which has a similar pricing structure to reserved space violations.

These three types of tickets were the most frequently unpaid. More than 150 no-decal tickets issued before Aug. 22 have not been paid, and since violating cars lack decals, parking services does not have them in its computer system and holds cannot be placed on owners’ accounts to compel them to pay. Reserved space violations comprised 119 of the unpaid tickets, and expired meter tickets made up 51 of the 414 unpaid tickets.


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