Manteca’s residential streets that are not truck routes ceased being a bargain parking alternative for semi-trucks Tuesday.
That’s due to the City Council adopting a resolution that increases the fine for illegal truck parking to $125. The fine had been at $50 for the past 20 years and was at least $46 cheaper than in surrounding cities.
In addition those illegally parked trucks that have an auxiliary noise — refrigeration units that run non-stop — will be subject to an $88 fine. That means a refrigerated truck parked illegally in a neighborhood will get fined $213 each time the vehicle is cited as opposed to $50 in the past.
The council also doubled a wide array of parking violation fines such as blocking a fire hydrant that applies to all vehicles.
Manteca Police Lieutenant Paul Carmona noted the fee increase request was in response to a significant uptick in recent years of illegal truck parking that officers have been dealing with. In addition a number of frustrated residents have sent the city letters regarding the consistent illegal parking of trucks.
Carmona said in talking with truckers officers were told it was a bargain to have to pay a $50 ticket in Manteca for illegal truck parking compared with paying to park at a legal facility.
Mayor Ben Cantu questioned whether $125 was high enough of a deterrent.
Staff indicated since fines are set by council resolution and not the ordinance process, that if it isn’t effective the council could further increase the fine.
Parking tickets are designed as tools to get the motoring public to comply with the rules and is not a revenue source of any consequence.
The city uses Ticket Data, a contract firm that processes the tickets at a percent of the fine collected. In doing so the cost is significantly lower than what it would be if the city hired additional in-house records staff.
The city at the mid-point of the current fiscal year had collected $40,000 from parking fines that are non-moving violations.
Speeding, red light running, and such are moving violations and call under the state’s jurisdiction to collect. The city receives less than 17 percent of fines the court imposes for moving violations. Two years ago that was less than $120,000 a year.
Between parking fines and moving violations the city collects just enough to cover the cost of one officers’ salary and benefits of the city’s five officer traffic enforcement unit.
Truck parking is legal along designated truck routes in Manteca unless otherwise posted. Several council members indicated they wanted to look at areas of concern where trucks park along truck routes and possibly adopt new rules restricting parking in specific locations.
Some of the parking fines that were also doubled mean parking in front of a fire hydrant or in a no parking zone will now cost $64, doing a vehicle repair in the street or parking for more than 72 hours on the street will now be a $54 fine, parking outside of markings will be a $50 fine, an unhitched trailer will be $64, obstruction of a bike lane will be $204, while parking in an alley or in a passenger loading zone will be $64.
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