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Detroit spends $32 to issue and process $30 parking violations

- The Washington Times - Wednesday, March 19, 2014

As part of Detroit's efforts to dig itself out of debt, the city may opt to increase parking fines. It currently spends $32 to issue and process $30 parking violations.

Detroit's restructuring consultants have proposed a two-tiered structure of $45 and $150 fines instead of the $20, $30 and $100 system it has now, The Detroit News reported.

"It's another example of the old, antiquated system and processes the city has that creates impediments for anyone trying to do their job," said Bill Nowling, the spokesman for Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr.

Mr. Orr is also waiting for finished analysis of Detroit's Municipal Parking department, which The Detroit News said "generally breaks even or fails to bring in enough revenue to cover its expenses."

No matter what the city decides on rates, it will still have other challenges to work through. Mr. Nowling told Detroit News that half of the city's 3,400 parking meters do not work at any given time, and Detroit Chief Operating Officer Gary Brown said that the city doesn't even know how much is owed in unpaid tickets.

Regardless, Mr. Brown believes that if the rates are increased it will translate into $6 million per year for Detroit.

"That's real money," he told The Detroit News. "If the asset is truly an asset and making money, no one is going to want to [alter Mr. Orr's bankruptcy proposals]."

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