Holding a press conference at the New York Chinatown Senior Citizen Center, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced details Thursday about how to handle the misuse of 125,000 city-issued parking placards used by public officials and NYC employees including the Department of Transportation, Department of Education, and NYPD.
The mayor noted that there are many people who have been abusing the parking placards by using the same one on different vehicles, using outdated and fake placards, and by placing badges, vests and other items in the vehicle’s windshield to show they are permitted to park in certain parking spots and other places around the city.
The de Blasio administration plans to on an existing plan to crack down on the misuse and abuse of parking placards that was established in 2017. According to de Blasio, the crackdown led to a 93% increase in summonses for illegal parking in 2018.
The mayor said he plans to phase out the physical placards that are currently in use and move to a sticker system that functions similarly to a vehicle registration windshield sticker. By 2021 Mayor de Blasio says that the city will move to an all-digital parking management system where parking enforcement employees will use handheld devices to scan license plates and determine if a vehicle is permitted to be in a particular spot.
NYC Council Member Margaret S Chin expressed her concerns about people abusing parking placards and is looking forward to the mayor’s new plan on addressing parking placard misuse.
“Placard abuse does more than frustrate New Yorkers hunting for a parking spot — it is a public menace and unfairly burdens small businesses,” she said in a press release.
“In many Lower Manhattan neighborhoods, such as Chinatown and FiDi, heavily congested and narrow streets are made even more dangerous by flagrant placard abuse. We urgently need a comprehensive solution to this problem, which is why I am proud to support Mayor de Blasio’s digital parking management system and increased enforcement measures to go after those who abuse the placard system, she added.”
Parking placard stickers
The New York City Department of Transportation has launched a pilot program that replaces standard placards with stickers. According to the DOT, the pilot program is currently being used on 300 DOT owned vehicles in the city. The benefit of the sticker is that it cannot be removed and used on another vehicle, effectively reducing parking placard misuse.
According to the mayor, the city will run the pilot program until summer 2019 and determine how it will proceed and transition to the digital parking management system. Digital parking management system
The results of the sticker program will dictate how the city moves to the new, plate-by-plate digital parking management system for city vehicles.
The integrated parking management system will allow New York City parking authorities to use handheld enforcement devices to scan license plates to determine if a vehicle is permitted to be in parking spot or location. The system will link parking meters and license plates with a database that will determine if a vehicle is violating placard or parking rules.
Mayor de Blasio said this program will be fully operational by 2021.
In addition to the sticker pilot program to replace parking placards, the mayor announced plans to enforce a three-strike policy to curtail the misuse of placards on vehicles in New York City by this spring. On the third strike, a person will have their parking privileges permanently revoked on top of any separate parking violations. The mayor says he will look into raising the penalty for placard violation from $50 to $250.