New policy to blame for parking tickets
Many students have expressed anger and outrage at a perceived recent increase in parking tickets on campus, but Parking Operations is not backing down, saying all the fines are legitimate -- and final.
"I've gotten three random $100 tickets in the last month -- one at A-lot when there wasn't enough space, one outside my dorm with flashers on and another in front of Thayer for five minutes. It's ridiculous," said one student car-owner, Forrest Gay '02.
College Parking Operations said a new policy of ticketing after hours and on weekends in "core areas" of the campus -- like in front of Thayer dining hall and residence halls -- is the cause of students' bewilderment over their increased parking tickets.
"We are patrolling at least two nights a week in fire lanes all over campus," Barr said. Barr also said that the extra enforcement has been conducted "periodically over the past few years" when, like, this year, there has been a "defined need to step up enforcement to stop the practice of parking in fire lanes."
The parking policy forbids students to park outside of student lots except from 6 p.m. on Fridays through 2 a.m. on Mondays and between 6 p.m. and 2 a.m. on any weekday. Yet students said they found it common practice in the past to park momentarily in front of Food Court with flashers on and not be ticketed.
No longer will parking operations turn a blind eye, said Barr, stating that parking is prohibited at all times in fire lanes, especially the oft-used lane in front of Thayer Dining Hall and Psi Upsilon fraternity.
These new tickets are increasingly frustrating to student car-owners, who already face fines starting at $50 for the first two violations in core parking areas and $25 for all other areas.
Discrepancies remain between what students and parking officials believe to be acceptable areas and times. Students report getting tickets over holidays and in the student A-Lot.
Pawan Nihalani '01 said he has gotten four tickets for parking near residence halls, including by the River dorms and outside Richardson hall.
Reid Smith '01 said he was ticketed in A-Lot for "parking on the lawn" when the lot was full.
"The lot was full and I had to park way in the back. Everyone in the row that I was in got tickets and all our cars were completely out of the way," Smith said.
But when Barr was asked about these A-Lot tickets, he called them "highly unlikely" since A-Lot is rarely full to capacity. Barr said there will be a committee formed to look at parking fines and regulations in the near future, which he will chair.