CITY HALL — A City Council maverick and mayoral challenger is proposing a new amnesty program for parking-ticket scofflaws.
Ald. Bob Fioretti (2nd) said he would submit an ordinance at Wednesday's City Council meeting that would rescind penalty fees on parking tickets issued before April 15 last year and establish two potential payment plans.
"Let’s give people the opportunity to pay their tickets in a responsible way," Fioretti said Tuesday. "This proposal would give people with tickets some flexibility and would put much-needed revenue in the city coffers. It is the responsible thing to do, and I hope my colleagues and the mayor can join me in supporting this ordinance."
If enacted, Fioretti's ordinance would rescind penalty fees, which can double or triple the cost of a ticket, starting April 15 for violations more than a year old when paid off.
It would also establish two potential payment plans. Veterans and current U.S. military personnel, senior citizens and those below the poverty line would be eligible for a 24-month payment plan after paying a quarter of the total due.
Others would be eligible for a 12-month installment plan after paying half the amount due.
Fioretti pointed to an earlier amnesty program under Mayor Richard M. Daley's administration that pulled in $7 million.
"This is a way to address a new hole in the budget," Fioretti said, pointing to a potential $58 million court ruling on city parking garages.
Kelley Quinn, spokeswoman for Mayor Rahm Emanuel, said laws were already on the books allowing many scofflaws a 36-month payment plan after paying a quarter of the amount due. She added that current city law allows a person with more than $500 in tickets to start a payment plan with a quarter payment or $500, whichever is greater, meaning Fioretti's plan would actually cost more up front for offenders with more than $1,000 in tickets.
For more neighborhood news, listen to DNAinfo Radio here: