02-22-2011, 08:15 AM
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FYI: New parking ticket trial system
The City of Vancouver is making it easier and quicker to settle disputes over parking tickets, but it could also end up costing offenders more. |
Under the current system, if car owners want to fight city hall over their ticket, the argument would go to provincial court, a process which could take years to reach a decision.
On Monday, a new bylaw adjudication system came into effect. Now, an independent adjudicator appointed by the city will be in charge of parking tickets.
Those who choose to fight their ticket can make their case online or over the telephone.
"The dispute period is reduced from the current two and a half years in court to approximately two and a half months," said bylaw adjudicator Janice McKenzie. "So it's a significant reduction in time."
However, parking ticket recipients who take their dispute to the new city adjudicator and lose the adjudication will not only have to pay the full ticket price, but also a $25 adjudication fee.
Those accused of an infraction have 14 days to decide to go to adjudication.
But the most welcome change in the system might be that if the ticket is paid within 14 days, the fine will be cut in half.
The city issues an estimated 450,000 parking tickets each year.
Coles: No more getting out of parking tickets by fighting your tickets then hoping the trial takes too long.