Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Meter guy issued "as many citations as I could..."


Not that there's any doubt about it, but the story in yesterday's Chronicle by the retiring meter guy provides more confirmation of the predator/prey relationship the city has with motorists :

I started in 1987, when we were still part of SFPD. Back then, it was about issuing as many citations as I could because that's what I was told I was being paid to do. We had a work performance average of 13.8 tickets per hour under SFPD. Of course, back then the bail for expired meters was $8. Today it's $55 or $65. For a bus stop, it's $255; for a fire hydrant, $90. I tell people, "Rather than expose yourself to a citation, park in a garage. It's a lot less expensive, especially if you're just doing something really quickly."

As if "a garage" is always available!

The city has always had a quota system for its meter maids and meter guys.

A couple of years ago Will Reisman reported in the Examiner how the city insists that "parking control officers step up their production" to make money for the city ("Parking citations on the decline," Jan. 8, 2010). 

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14 Comments:

At 2:53 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

North Beach garage always has space.

And shit, park in a bus stop and you deserve a $200 ticket. You aren't just holding up a parking space, you are making a bus full of people have to walk around your car. And as for fire hydrants, really? If you don't want an f'ing ticket, don't park illegally. Pretty simple shit.

 
At 7:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Are you implying the PCO issued tickets improperly?

If not - fuck the people parking illegally. Key word - ILLEGALLY. Or do you think they should be excused from their scofflaw ways?

 
At 7:54 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rob wants them excused because they drive cars and are doing the Lord's work.

PCO's aren't making these tickets up. They are giving them to people who are parking illegally. Don't hate the PCO's, if people just followed the rules then they wouldn't get a ticket. Again, so so simple.

 
At 9:12 AM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

What's objectionable is the implication by MTA officials that an important function of parking control officers is to raise money for the city. Like all city workers, their mission should be serving the people of San Francisco---and their visitors---not preying on them to raise money for a feckless City Hall.

Of course those double-parking, blocking driveways, and parking on the sidewalk should be ticketed. But PCOs should be instructed to give people the benefit of the doubt on close calls, instead of nit-picking and focusing on raising money.

 
At 10:30 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"the implication by MTA officials that an important function of parking control officers is to raise money for the city."

I think the implication is to give a ticket for a ticketable offense, i.e. do their job.

 
At 11:43 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

People should protest this awful policy by the City by not parking illegally! Stick it to the man!

 
At 12:34 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon, better to bitch on your blog or in the Letters-to-Editor section.

 
At 7:11 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wasn't it always obvious that parking tickets = city revenue? What's the big deal? Should we stop giving people tickets?
I nominate this as the non-item of the month.

 
At 8:52 PM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

Your comment suggests that you didn't read the post and the links in the post, in partiular the Reisman story on the MTA's quota policy. Nothing wrong with raising money with parking tickets, but that should be a secondary motive, with enforcing necessary and reasonable parking laws as the primary function of "traffic control officers." They're public employees and as such they should be serving the public, not preying on them to raise money for the MTA, which has been known to bundle up taxpayers' money and throw it off the back of the train---or into the bottomless pit known as the Central Subway Project.

It's the predator/prey relationship that I think is unhealthy and perhaps not politically sustainable.

 
At 8:47 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"It's the predator/prey relationship that I think is unhealthy and perhaps not politically sustainable."

Two things, again if you park illegally, expect a ticket. The PCO's aren't making up violations to ticket people, the driver is parking illegally. I don't see how that is so hard to grasp. 2nd, "politically sustainable" for who? Who will be "held" responsible? Like Anon said, if you want to stick to the man, park legally.

 
At 11:48 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Currently, if fact, not enough tickets are issued. Call P&T with a viewed violation, such as trucks parking on the sidewalk (e.g.,Stevenson @ 2nd St.),cars parking in crosswalks and in red zones established for pedestrian safety at corners (like all the time on Laguna St.)and they don't come out. SFMTA should hire back more personnel; it's a good investment as there are violations everywhere. What about the diamond lanes for buses? Routinely occupied by cars, thus holding up buses from pulling up to an island resulting in a really slow commute along Market St.
It is truly beyond me why legions of (non-disabled) young people don't walk or bus it between neighborhoods. We 60 year-olds do!

 
At 2:58 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is truly beyond me why legions of (non-disabled) young people don't walk or bus it between neighborhoods.

Walking isn't practical for most people.

 
At 12:19 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you have lots of large bags, no--walking is not practical. But if you are making your way over to another neighborhood or 2 or 3, brisk walking is the best low impact exercise you can get, especially if you incorporate some hills for some cardio. Dare I say it--there are a lot of fat/chubby/zoftig/thick people in this City. They don't have to join a gym. Just walk briskly (you don't have to wildly swing your arms) and incorporate it into your errands. Research the literature that reports on the health of people in places like NYC, where many do not own a car and have to walk to their neighborhood stores, buses, subways and perhaps a flight or 4 of apartment stairs. They fare better, healthwise. Type 2 Diabetes is in epidemic stages.
Young 'uns are encouraged to consume "generous portions" of food and 48-oz. sugary drinks and to glorify bacon-cheese over a Niman Ranch steak, slathered with fried this and that, topped by a farm-fresh egg.
I'm posting this anonymously because I fear those who find these statements heretical and I might be the victim of the next trend--after fried, sauteed insects, of course--of cannibalism.

 
At 11:30 AM, Anonymous Gary said...

Such a great article The city has always had a quota system for its meter maids and meter guys.
A couple of years ago Will Reisman reported in the Examiner how the city insists that parking control officers step up their production for the city.Thanks for sharing this article.

 

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