Thursday, February 25, 2010

Oakland Exempts Wealthy from Parking Tickets

By Robert Gammon
Thu, Feb 25, 2010 at 10:00 AM

The City of Oakland has exempted two wealthy neighborhoods from its parking ticket blitz since last summer, and instead has targeted low and middle-income neighborhoods, the Chron reports. The city apparently exempted the upscale Montclair and Broadway Terrace neighborhoods after residents there complained about Oakland’s decision to begin issuing tickets en masse last summer to boost revenues. But the decision has resulted in parking tickets being issued disproportionately in low and middle-income areas.

The most common tickets have been for parking cars partially on sidewalks on narrow streets. City residents have been parking this way for years to avoid being hit by other motorists, but Oakland officials last summer decided to crack down on the practice as a way to help balance the city’s budget. But residents in East Oakland, where streets are as narrow as they are in Montclair or Broadway Terrace, note that it’s unfair to target them, and not wealthier city residents.

It’s not clear whether City Administrator Dan Lindheim knew of the parking division’s decision to lay off Montclair and Broadway Terrace, because he didn't respond to the Chron's request for an interview. Parking enforcement officers who disagree with the city’s decision plan to hold a noon demonstration today at City Hall.

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