City Council chews on bills requiring photos for health, parking tickets

jimmy vacca
Councilman Jimmy Vacca of the Bronx three new bills that would require photos for any city tickets for parking, health or sanitation violations.
Credit: William Alatriste/NYC Council

A trio of new bills in the City Council aim to set cameras on any violations that might result in a fine to New Yorkers.

Councilman Jimmy Vacca of the Bronx introduced the set of legislation, which would that any tickets for parking, sanitation or health violations have a photo evidence to go with them.

Vacca’s bills were introduced into the Council on Thursday and have a ways to go before they might end up for a votes on the floor. However, all three are aimed at making inspections and ticket-writing more transparent for New Yorkers.

“When it comes to summonses from the city, people are basically guilty until they prove their innocence – but I want people to be innocent until proven guilty,” Vacca said in a statement Thursday.

One of the bills would have the Sanitation Department take photos of any finable offense, which can rage from dirty sidewalks to scavenging to poorly maintained trash bins.

Vacca’s parking ticket bill would require a one-year pilot program whereby ticketing officers would need to document any stopping, standing or parking violations with photos starting January 2015.

The third bill to require Health Department inspectors give photo proof of violations would apply to any food service establishment, and through which business owners would get a copy a photograph for each and every violation.

“New Yorkers have the right to insist that there be evidence of what they’re being charged with, and with the technology available today, this is a no brainer,” Vacca added.

The Council is also mulling another bill on health inspections from by Staten Island Councilman Vincent Ignizio that would set up its own pilot program for health inspectors to wear body cameras during inspections.

Follow Chester Jesus Soria on Twitter @chestersoria


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