In San Francisco, Parking Tickets Are the New Taxation

In San Francisco, Parking Tickets Are the New Taxation

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SAN FRANCISCO -- “If you are going to San Francisco, be sure to wear some flowers in your hair.” So goes the hit song from 1967 that painted the city as a mecca of openness and freedom. Today, however, the lyrics might go something like this: “If you are going to San Francisco, be sure to have lots of coins in your pocket and don’t violate any traffic rules, or else: fines, fines, fines.”

Not so poetic, admittedly, nor pretty. But neither are the heavy fines and ticketing efforts that are being waged here due to the budget crisis in a drawn-out recession.

Take parking violations. Already among the highest in the nation, proposals are in the works for a $3 increase on parking violations, making a parking ticket a whopping $68. Street cleaning parking violations could soon put you back $58. But if you parked at a handicap zone without a permit or at a bus loading area, you might as well give up your car. It will set you back $976.

Moving violation fines are also quite steep. Run a red light and it will cost you $436, up from $381 in 2008. If you didn’t come to a full stop at a stop sign? That’ll be $214.

The cash-strapped Municipal Transportation Agency desperately needs revenue. Since taxation isn’t going to do it, overzealous fines will have to. San Francisco collected $41.5 million in parking meters revenues, and about $101 million in traffic fines this fiscal year. It projects to receive $112 million from traffic fines for 2012 and that number is likely to increase if the recession won’t let up.

But a San Franciscan doesn’t need to own a car to face exorbitant fines. Early one morning recently on the metro platform at Embarcadero and Folsom, 20 inspectors in protective gear plus one bomb-sniffing dog swarmed the metro trains. Armed with handheld Clipper card readers to detect passengers’ electronic payment cards, they inspected everyone in sight, and those who didn’t pay were asked to “Step outside, please!”

Jaded commuters seemed at best resigned to the disturbance, but a well-manicured older woman clutched her bag and city map to her chest as if she was about to be robbed. When the train moved on, she said to her male companion, “Honestly, I thought we were having some kind of terrorists attack.”

The person who was asked to “step outside” probably felt the same: Since his Clipper card didn’t work, he was given a $100 fine, raised from $70 since last month.

Once a deterrent to bad behavior and infractions, ticketing and fines have become an important revenue stream in cash-strapped cities like San Francisco. The city budget deficit was estimated at about $380 million for the 2011-2012 fiscal year. The crisis looming ahead is worse, with a deficit for 2012-2013 estimated at $408 million, and for the following year a $642 million shortfall.


Many residents now feel that the city government has become a kind of Kleptocracy, a government run by thieves. That is, those in power tax residents through the form of heavy fines for much-needed cash, even as basic services are under threat.

When news that parking meter violations might go up yet again, many angry readers wrote comments on SFgate.com, expressing their dismay and outrage. “Citations are not supposed to be a source of revenue!” noted one writer who said he doesn’t own a car but is nevertheless livid. “They are supposed to be a DETERRENT!”

“It's clear that ultimately the city will lose revenue from both sales taxes and parking fines as people go elsewhere to shop,” observed another.

Someone who claims to have worked once as an administrator for the San Francisco traffic fines bureau had this so say: “Fallacious logic of creating revenue for the City by outrageous parking fees is only reducing the revenue the City businesses both large and small would bring into the City coffers.”

The overall message seems clear: Parking tickets are bad for business, deterring shoppers and diners alike from visiting the city.

For the working poor, the system of heavy fines can quickly become something close to tragedy.

Rosalina, a cleaning lady in her 40s who did not want to give her last name, was grief-stricken when she walked out of a posh condominium complex near Embarcadero and Harrison with her cleaning equipment to find a parking ticket on her old Toyota Corolla. She had exceeded the two-hour limit for residential parking. In broken English, she said while wiping away tears: “I make five hour[s] to pay this. I get three [of] these [tickets in] one month. Soon, I [will have] no more car.”

If you're going to San Francisco
You’re going to meet some gentle people there


Not necessarily, if you are taking public transportation without a fare. One visitor from Seattle died in July while running away from the police in the Bayview-Hunters Point neighborhood after allegedly exchanging gunfire. He was a 19-year-old parolee named Kenneth Wade Harding. Harding was asked for evidence of his fare on a Muni bus and he didn’t have any. The bullet that killed him, police now claim, was from but his own gun. Whether that’s true or not, it could not dispel the perception of residents of the neighborhood that Harding was killed for lack of bus fare.

As noted in an editorial in the local SF Bay View newspaper: “If you’re to believe police accounts, all they knew was that Harding was running away upon failure to pay a $2 transfer, spontaneously shot himself, and BANG BANG BANG.” 

Such a strange vibration…
People in motion…


People are in motion, but for the majority it is a downward spiral.

And if there’s a strange vibration to the city by the Bay, it’s not one of freedom and openness-- more like a slow, strangling feeling.

Andrew Lam is author of East Eats West: Writing in Two Hemispheres and Perfume Dreams: Reflections on the Vietnamese Diasora. His next book, Birds of Paradise, is due out in 2013.
 

Comments

 
Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

why dont we just sell muni and give the citizens a break all around....

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

But no one, I mean no one ever messes with the bike nazi's.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

THIS IS ACTUALLY QUITE SIMPLE. LET'S FIND-OUT WHO'S RESPONSIBLE FOR SETTING THE COSTS OF THE FINES, AND HAVE THEM REMOVED FROM WHATEVER OFFICE AND RESPONSIBILITIES THEY HOLD. IF THEIR REPLACEMENT WON'T LOWER THE FINES TO A REASONABLE LEVEL, WE'LL IMMEDIATELY GET THINGS IN-MOTION TO REMOVE THEM AS WELL, AND SO-ON. THIS IS OUR CITY, AND WE HAVE THE RIGHT AND POWER OF RE-CALLS. LET'S MOBILIZE, AND USE THOSE RIGHTS AND POWERS. I BELIEVE THAT THE BUREAUCRACY WILL SEE THE LIGHT QUITE QUICKLY, AND CHANGE THESE THINGS TO REMAIN IN-OFFICE...

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

THIS IS ACTUALLY QUITE SIMPLE. LET'S FIND-OUT WHO'S RESPONSIBLE FOR SETTING THE COSTS OF THE FINES, AND HAVE THEM REMOVED FROM WHATEVER OFFICE AND RESPONSIBILITIES THEY HOLD. IF THEIR REPLACEMENT WON'T LOWER THE FINES TO A REASONABLE LEVEL, WE'LL IMMEDIATELY GET THINGS IN-MOTION TO REMOVE THEM AS WELL, AND SO-ON. THIS IS OUR CITY, AND WE HAVE THE RIGHT AND POWER OF RE-CALLS. LET'S MOBILIZE, AND USE THOSE RIGHTS AND POWERS. I BELIEVE THAT THE BUREAUCRACY WILL SEE THE LIGHT QUITE QUICKLY, AND CHANGE THESE THINGS TO REMAIN IN-OFFICE...

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

THIS IS ACTUALLY QUITE SIMPLE. LET'S FIND-OUT WHO'S RESPONSIBLE FOR SETTING THE COSTS OF THE FINES, AND HAVE THEM REMOVED FROM WHATEVER OFFICE AND RESPONSIBILITIES THEY HOLD. IF THEIR REPLACEMENT WON'T LOWER THE FINES TO A REASONABLE LEVEL, WE'LL IMMEDIATELY GET THINGS IN-MOTION TO REMOVE THEM AS WELL, AND SO-ON. THIS IS OUR CITY, AND WE HAVE THE RIGHT AND POWER OF RE-CALLS. LET'S MOBILIZE, AND USE THOSE RIGHTS AND POWERS. I BELIEVE THAT THE BUREAUCRACY WILL SEE THE LIGHT QUITE QUICKLY, AND CHANGE THESE THINGS TO REMAIN IN-OFFICE...

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Gotta just LOVE San Francisco ! Once a vibrant city, now just a bankrupt slum of Progressive Policies that have all but destroyed the city's charm. What a shame.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Excellent article. SF government has become a den of thieves. Boycott San Francisco to let those in SF government know the consequences of their stupidity. Though, more likely, those stupid SF guys just might raise fines more to make up for the lost sales tax revenue. Duh.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Gotta just LOVE San Francisco ! Once a vibrant city, now just a bankrupt slum of Progressive Policies that have all but destroyed the city's charm. What a shame.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Gotta just LOVE San Francisco ! Once a vibrant city, now just a bankrupt slum of Progressive Policies that have all but destroyed the city's charm. What a shame.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

I like to put boogers and poop on my parking tickets before I mail them in.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Why are people driving in the city anyway? There is some of the best public transportation to get in and out of the city anyway. You could probably ride the Muni w/o paying for a year and get ticketed only once or twice. Still cheaper than buying a pass daily or monthly. I think the public transport in the city is great.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

fuck the pigs, fuck the government...they can kiss my ass

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Shucking people who can't afford it seems to noe be a way of doing normal business now in the city. I don't go there unless I have to, and then I take BART to avoid as much as I can of SF's policy of piracy.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

forgot to mention the "towing mafia"...located...you guessed it. across the street from the main police station on bryant and 7th. my car was stolen. found 3 weeks later. filed a police report at the richmond station on 6th and geary. lady said they will call you to pick up the car. "...you have to pick it in 20 minutes from receiving the call" i said. wow. 20 minutes. since i have no car. i need to take the bus, and you know what that means. a bus every 30 minutes. etc, etc.

short story. tow mafia called me and said pick up the car one day. 380 bucks, and if you pick it up tomorrow, another 40 dollars. i said. nobody called from the police department to pick up the car.

they said = go and take it up with the police. we are just the tow company.

went to the police station on 7th and there is a big ( i mean BIG) sign explaining "how to file a complaint" and in small print, it reads that "if car was towed by order the police, no complaint is valid"

to add insult to injury, if you want to have a "look at your stolen car" there is a police "car viewing" fee.

is a total rip off. it is organized crime indeed.

next time you vote for someone. keep that that question in mind.

and if you are kind of short of money (because the economy sucks) this mafia will put you out of business. scratching homelessness.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

I'm tempted to say this is socialism, but in SF it is way beyond that, it is Bolshevism pure and simple.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

This is what happens when neo-liberals run the town. True liberalism was 1968. The modern neo-liberalism of SF in 2012 is a monster mix of commie/fascism at best.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

This is why I will never go back to SF: even though I was raised there.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

With the bridge toll at $5.00, the gas at $4.00/gal and the parking ranging from $2.00/h up to 15.00/h our family and friends visits to the city dwindle to about once or twice a year from the monthly and more frequency. Too bad the arrogant politicians do not see the need to send some of the city's employed parasites home, but rather shrink the business base for the remaining business that dare stay in the City. Good luck San Francisco, in weathering the economic storm. You may never recover since the history of fines and fees demonstrates that fines and fees never roll back.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Imagine if a parking ticket was .001% of your earnings(wages or dividends). For both a minimum wage employee and a billionaire it would be a trivial amount of money respective of ones worth. Presently though the 'poor' are penalized far more than the wealthy for the same infraction. $200 is a big deal for a minimum wage employee and nothing for a billionaire.

Also consider fines for rape, incest and other crimes that impact people and the communities they live in.

Consider if there was a fine of 50% of 5 years wages for rape, incest etc. Similar fines for mugging, robbery, etc. Then we could pay all the med/support bills associated with the crimes. Be interesting to see how the religious nuts that rape kids would be fined.

I luv SF. The pace of tax loss due to job automation and job outsourcing that are causing tax short falls will be the norm for many many many years to come as well as general unemployment will continue to go up. It's not going to get any better.

Unless the city finds other ways to generate revenue. Generally though government needs to get way way smaller and smarter.

Public transit should be like most countries. Bus/train companies compete to purchase routes and a public commission sets the fares the bus/train companies can charge. No taxes .. fast speedy buses.

Health Care is all about prevention. Tax the hell out of junk food, make producing healthy food virtually unregulated. Most of the diseases we have are all self inflected.

Require all new homes to be off the grid and slowly require all present homes to be made off the grid.

Interesting times we live in.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

With the bridge toll at $5.00, the gas at $4.00/gal and the parking ranging from $2.00/h up to 15.00/h our family and friends visits to the city dwindle to about once or twice a year from the monthly and more frequency. Too bad the arrogant politicians do not see the need to send some of the city's employed parasites home, but rather shrink the business base for the remaining business that dare stay in the City. Good luck San Francisco, in weathering the economic storm. You may never recover since the history of fines and fees demonstrates that fines and fees never roll back.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

I have lived in the South Bay (Cupertino/Saratoga) for over 35 years and visit the city 5 - 10 times each year, After reading this article, I plan to reduce my visits to 1 - 2 times/year. I'll miss the shopping and restaurants in San Francisco but do not want to take the risk of receiving an outrageous fine for visiting the city.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

THEY ARE TRYING TO MAKE EVEYONES LIFE MISSARABLE AND HART PUSHING BUSSINESS OUT AND THEY ARE STEALING OUR MONEY.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

This is why I no longer go to SF. I hope they enjoy the revenue from that ticket I got 2 years ago, because it was the last they got.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

With the bridge toll at $5.00, the gas at $4.00/gal and the parking ranging from $2.00/h up to 15.00/h our family and friends visits to the city dwindle to about once or twice a year from the monthly and more frequency. Too bad the arrogant politicians do not see the need to send some of the city's employed parasites home, but rather shrink the business base for the remaining business that dare stay in the City. Good luck San Francisco, in weathering the economic storm. You may never recover since the history of fines and fees demonstrates that fines and fees never roll back.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

As tourism dries up and locals go elsewhere to shop, the kleptocrats on the city council will have much to anwer to the citizens for.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Yea, fine the citizens, but allow the ILLEGAL ALIENS free roam in their cars anywhere in the city they want, without a drivers license or insurance.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

I've often wondered how my car can be ticketed for illegal parking ten miles away from the state
of calif. employee parking lot located at the west bay maintenence yard where it stayed for the entire day for approx. 9 to 10 hours. This happened a few years ago but I still get pea ode about it. It was a ten dollar fine which I would have prostested if not for the fact of taking off from work and it costing me more to go court than the fine. Oh! I know how it happened. It's called stealing. The mandatory number of ticket were not achieved.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

I think that there is something fundamentally wrong with mixing law enforcement with revenue collection. To me, this sounds like making prostitutes out of law enforcement officers. By the way, the $58 fine street cleaning parking violations in San Francisco looks like a bargain compared to Oakland which has started charging $ 83 fine for the same violation.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

San Francisco, what a shithole.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Totally agree, the number of parking tickets issued in San Francisco is beyond ridiculous. I once got a ticket for turning my wheels in the wrong direction parking on a hill (facing uphill, with a curb, I turned the wheels toward instead of away, figuring if the car started rolling it would back out away from traffic).

And it wasn't a real steep hill San Francisco is notorious for, either...it was a gentle slope of MAYBE 15 degrees or so. A number of other cars on the block had tickets on them for not turning their wheels at all.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

The noose keeps getting tighter and tighter. But to survive, you've gotta have a plan. Don't park in spaces that have meters. You're much better off parking in a city garage because you won't have to worry about getting a ticket. Their brutal parking policies have driven away business. I could imagine how difficult it is for a small business owner trying to attract customers when customers are scared away by the parking police.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

I am sure the high price of parking tickets and parking meters costs merchants more business. I know I spend a lot less time shopping now that I have to shovel a pocket full of change into the meter every time I want to walk around shopping districts like Clement St, Geary Blvd, or West Portal. Where I might have spent an hour before, now it's 15-20 minutes, for fear of my meter running out, or because it just doesn't seem worth spending $2/hr for parking. And I'm sure they're already planning when they can raise meter rates again.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

The City effort to make money, is getting way with these outrageous parking ticket.
It has made the life of its residents an absolutely hell.
This method of creating revenue for the City, should be stop.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

That is an understatement! $119 for not having a front license plate on my car - when it didn't evenhave one when it was purchased? It is nauseating. Hey - I grew up in this town... tax the interlopers! Not me. These parking tics are totally anti-human.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Don't blame the fines. Blame yourself. Take responsibility for driving in this city. If you obey the rules of the road, you won't get a ticket. Carry coins in your car or your pocket to feed the meters. Look at the parking signs when you park. I've lived in this City all my life and I have never been cited for a moving violation (knock on wood) and have only received three to four parking tickets in 33+ years of driving. And of those three to four parking tickets, I knew it was my fault and I paid them. Don't like the fines? Stop driving and take MUNI. And if you take MUNI, take responsibility for paying the fare or having a valid Clipper card. Can't afford the City? Move to a more affordable city. Came here illegally and can't find a decent job? Go back to your own country. Stop blaming others and look in the mirror!

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

San Francisco can keep their parking spaces, also their gays, their diseased. Get out while you can. Hell says hello, and that their waiting for all of you.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Stop breaking the law and you will stop being fined. Simple.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

SF is the laughing stock of the country. What else do the gays want to complain about? the weather? With no money left, let the government cannibalise the citizens, taking the food out of everyone's mouth and to sleep on the streets. Get out while you can. The city is a urinal cesspool.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

They are also selectively enforced.... by time and potential revenue. The Castro "S" stickers are supposedly enforced until 9pm. In fact the only time they are enforced to 9pm is when there is an event in the Castro. Any other time no, and resident who pay nearly $100 a year for the privilege of parking in there own neighborhood many times have to park a block or more from their home due to all the out of hood parkers. Not to mention the stickers are not enforced on the weekends (the busiest time of the week especially near Mission Delores Park) so the residents have two choices; stay locked in there home or drive around endlessly looking for a place to park.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Thanks for the article.
This maybe worse in SFO but all cities are finding fines as the new way of raising revenue. This is another way of getting into public's pockets while claiming "no new taxes."

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Funny how they ran this article. LAST NIGHT I GOT 2 TICKETS!! they section off entire parts of streets from 12-6am...WHY!?!?! the street cleaning only needs 2 hours tops of a window. the SFMTA is CORRUPT!! they tack on a 150 "administrative" fee if you get towed..yea right thats a straight tax! i hate san francisco sometimes..

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

I fought a ticket and tow in residential neighborhood....took a year, but won solely on their lack of proof by the tow truck driver, owner(who supposedly called) and DPT. Even though I had two witness, one of which was a nun!

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Wow. Not biased at all, are we?

If you don't want to have to pay a ticket fee, then don't park (or drive) illegally. If you absolutely have to drive in the first place, find a parking lot. The $15-35 you pay will be much lower than any parking fines you might otherwise have to pay.

As a native San Franciscan, the only time I had a car is when I commuted to the East Bay for work. Otherwise, it's completely unnecessary to have a car here, even if you have children. (It helps, of course, but it's not necessary.) For those days when you need a car, sign up with one of those rent-by-the-hour car places, or borrow one from a friend. Heck, take a cab if you have to. You'll save thousands of dollars a year on gas alone.

I have not yet needed to park in a handicapped zone. I feel quite happy about that, and I most certainly would never park in a handicapped zone unless I had to. For those selfish enough to do so when they don't need to, they absolutely deserve a $976 ticket. Screw those jerks! Same goes for people who park in bus zones, loading zones, two-hour zones, etc. In case you don't realize it, you are ACTUALLY COMMITTING A CRIME. It may not be murder or rape, or even assault, but it is theft. You are stealing something from someone.

For those in the handicapped zone, you are stealing a person's right to have easy access to wherever it is that they need to get. That could mean they have to drive around again and hope the spot opens up, be late for their appointment if they have one, or leave and come back another day, something that might be difficult if they are mobility challenged. Be fucking grateful you have the ability to walk comfortably to where you need to go and stay out of their spots.

For bus zones, you have either required the bus to stop while still in the intersection, or pull alongside and block an extra lane. So you are either 1) making pedestrians trying to cross the street walk outside of the crosswalk area putting their lives in danger of being hit by a car; 2) making the pedestrian wait until the bus moves, possibly missing one or two crossings depending on how many passengers have to board or waiting to load/unload someone in a wheelchair; or 3) making other vehicles wait behind the "double-parked" bus causing them delay in getting to their destination.

For street cleaning, you are not only requiring that someone swerve around you, but you are denying the residents/businesses in that area to have clean streets, one of the biggest complaints in this City. You've just made it so that street cannot be cleaned for up to another month.

All of these parking "sins" cause problems for someone else. But selfish jackasses don't think about other people, all they think about is what is most convenient for them. Assholes!

Next, fare-evaders. They do exist, and the are rampant on MUNI. If you don't want to pay for not paying, buy a fucking transfer already! Seriously? Every time people get on without paying, they are, again, stealing money. From MUNI. From the other passengers who have had their fares and the cost of the monthly passes raised to nearly double in the past few years. Instead of paying $35-45 a month for a Fast Pass, I now have to pay $72/month. (I make less than the median in SF, live paycheck to paycheck.) UnREAL! And it's due in large part to all of the people who sneak on and ride the bus for free. They absolutely deserve to be fined. And I don't believe for one second that an older lady thought the parking control officers were terrorists. That's just a crock of shit.

As for the death of Kenneth Wade Harding, he pulled his gun first. Even non-police officer eye-witness accounts say he pulled his gun first. He was not some innocent who forgot to pay his fare. He was a punk who was convicted in Seattle for pimping a 13 or 14 year old girl, and wanted in connection with the death of a pregnant woman. He ran and fired back over his shoulder. It was lucky that no innocent bystanders were killed that day. To top it off, his brother was arrested for participating in the beating death of a man in Seattle.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

SF is the laughing stock of the country. What else do the gays want to complain about? the weather? With no money left, let the government cannibalise the citizens, taking the food out of everyone's mouth and to sleep on the streets. With small business driven out and tourism gone. They will follow Vallejo into bankruptcy and their leaders out of a job. SF is too expensive, let the rich morons burn their dollars while everyone else get more for their buck elsewhere. Get out while you can. The city is a urinal cesspool.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Wow. Not biased at all, are we?

If you don't want to have to pay a ticket fee, then don't park (or drive) illegally. If you absolutely have to drive in the first place, find a parking lot. The $15-35 you pay will be much lower than any parking fines you might otherwise have to pay.

As a native San Franciscan, the only time I had a car is when I commuted to the East Bay for work. Otherwise, it's completely unnecessary to have a car here, even if you have children. (It helps, of course, but it's not necessary.) For those days when you need a car, sign up with one of those rent-by-the-hour car places, or borrow one from a friend. Heck, take a cab if you have to. You'll save thousands of dollars a year on gas alone.

I have not yet needed to park in a handicapped zone. I feel quite happy about that, and I most certainly would never park in a handicapped zone unless I had to. For those selfish enough to do so when they don't need to, they absolutely deserve a $976 ticket. Screw those jerks! Same goes for people who park in bus zones, loading zones, two-hour zones, etc. In case you don't realize it, you are ACTUALLY COMMITTING A CRIME. It may not be murder or rape, or even assault, but it is theft. You are stealing something from someone.

For those in the handicapped zone, you are stealing a person's right to have easy access to wherever it is that they need to get. That could mean they have to drive around again and hope the spot opens up, be late for their appointment if they have one, or leave and come back another day, something that might be difficult if they are mobility challenged. Be fucking grateful you have the ability to walk comfortably to where you need to go and stay out of their spots.

For bus zones, you have either required the bus to stop while still in the intersection, or pull alongside and block an extra lane. So you are either 1) making pedestrians trying to cross the street walk outside of the crosswalk area putting their lives in danger of being hit by a car; 2) making the pedestrian wait until the bus moves, possibly missing one or two crossings depending on how many passengers have to board or waiting to load/unload someone in a wheelchair; or 3) making other vehicles wait behind the "double-parked" bus causing them delay in getting to their destination.

For street cleaning, you are not only requiring that someone swerve around you, but you are denying the residents/businesses in that area to have clean streets, one of the biggest complaints in this City. You've just made it so that street cannot be cleaned for up to another month.

All of these parking "sins" cause problems for someone else. But selfish jackasses don't think about other people, all they think about is what is most convenient for them. Assholes!

Next, fare-evaders. They do exist, and the are rampant on MUNI. If you don't want to pay for not paying, buy a fucking transfer already! Seriously? Every time people get on without paying, they are, again, stealing money. From MUNI. From the other passengers who have had their fares and the cost of the monthly passes raised to nearly double in the past few years. Instead of paying $35-45 a month for a Fast Pass, I now have to pay $72/month. (I make less than the median in SF, live paycheck to paycheck.) UnREAL! And it's due in large part to all of the people who sneak on and ride the bus for free. They absolutely deserve to be fined. And I don't believe for one second that an older lady thought the parking control officers were terrorists. That's just a crock of shit.

As for the death of Kenneth Wade Harding, he pulled his gun first. Even non-police officer eye-witness accounts say he pulled his gun first. He was not some innocent who forgot to pay his fare. He was a punk who was convicted in Seattle for pimping a 13 or 14 year old girl, and wanted in connection with the death of a pregnant woman. He ran and fired back over his shoulder. It was lucky that no innocent bystanders were killed that day. To top it off, his brother was arrested for participating in the beating death of a man in Seattle.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Wow. Not biased at all, are we?

If you don't want to have to pay a ticket fee, then don't park (or drive) illegally. If you absolutely have to drive in the first place, find a parking lot. The $15-35 you pay will be much lower than any parking fines you might otherwise have to pay.

As a native San Franciscan, the only time I had a car is when I commuted to the East Bay for work. Otherwise, it's completely unnecessary to have a car here, even if you have children. (It helps, of course, but it's not necessary.) For those days when you need a car, sign up with one of those rent-by-the-hour car places, or borrow one from a friend. Heck, take a cab if you have to. You'll save thousands of dollars a year on gas alone.

I have not yet needed to park in a handicapped zone. I feel quite happy about that, and I most certainly would never park in a handicapped zone unless I had to. For those selfish enough to do so when they don't need to, they absolutely deserve a $976 ticket. Screw those jerks! Same goes for people who park in bus zones, loading zones, two-hour zones, etc. In case you don't realize it, you are ACTUALLY COMMITTING A CRIME. It may not be murder or rape, or even assault, but it is theft. You are stealing something from someone.

For those in the handicapped zone, you are stealing a person's right to have easy access to wherever it is that they need to get. That could mean they have to drive around again and hope the spot opens up, be late for their appointment if they have one, or leave and come back another day, something that might be difficult if they are mobility challenged. Be fucking grateful you have the ability to walk comfortably to where you need to go and stay out of their spots.

For bus zones, you have either required the bus to stop while still in the intersection, or pull alongside and block an extra lane. So you are either 1) making pedestrians trying to cross the street walk outside of the crosswalk area putting their lives in danger of being hit by a car; 2) making the pedestrian wait until the bus moves, possibly missing one or two crossings depending on how many passengers have to board or waiting to load/unload someone in a wheelchair; or 3) making other vehicles wait behind the "double-parked" bus causing them delay in getting to their destination.

For street cleaning, you are not only requiring that someone swerve around you, but you are denying the residents/businesses in that area to have clean streets, one of the biggest complaints in this City. You've just made it so that street cannot be cleaned for up to another month.

All of these parking "sins" cause problems for someone else. But selfish jackasses don't think about other people, all they think about is what is most convenient for them. Assholes!

Next, fare-evaders. They do exist, and the are rampant on MUNI. If you don't want to pay for not paying, buy a fucking transfer already! Seriously? Every time people get on without paying, they are, again, stealing money. From MUNI. From the other passengers who have had their fares and the cost of the monthly passes raised to nearly double in the past few years. Instead of paying $35-45 a month for a Fast Pass, I now have to pay $72/month. (I make less than the median in SF, live paycheck to paycheck.) UnREAL! And it's due in large part to all of the people who sneak on and ride the bus for free. They absolutely deserve to be fined. And I don't believe for one second that an older lady thought the parking control officers were terrorists. That's just a crock of shit.

As for the death of Kenneth Wade Harding, he pulled his gun first. Even non-police officer eye-witness accounts say he pulled his gun first. He was not some innocent who forgot to pay his fare. He was a punk who was convicted in Seattle for pimping a 13 or 14 year old girl, and wanted in connection with the death of a pregnant woman. He ran and fired back over his shoulder. It was lucky that no innocent bystanders were killed that day. To top it off, his brother was arrested for participating in the beating death of a man in Seattle.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

screw San Francisco. Money hungry fascist liberals. Boycott that city

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

SF is the laughing stock of the country. What else do the gays want to complain about? the weather? With no money left, let the government cannibalise the citizens, taking the food out of everyone's mouth and to sleep on the streets. With small business driven out and tourism gone. They will follow Vallejo into bankruptcy and their leaders out of a job. SF is too expensive, let the rich morons burn their dollars while everyone else get more for their buck elsewhere. Get out while you can. The city is a urinal cesspool.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

screw San Francisco. Money hungry fascist liberals. Boycott that city

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Come one come all to the People Democracy of San Francisco . 1st I live on the Presidio of SF ,No SFPD , No MTA , NO PARKING PROBLEMS , 2nd the stores in the Richmond district all pretty much suck and going to the beach safeway to deal with Meth heads pretty much ensures I go to Marin for my groceries , but better yet I buy my gas in Marin at about 40 cents less per gallon , sure I pay to cross the golden gate bridge but long as I fill my tank . I do 2 thing 1 offset the bridge toll and take money away from SF based stores which in reality is what progressive want anyway .

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

SF is the laughing stock of the country. What else do the gays want to complain about? the weather? With no money left, let the government cannibalise the citizens, taking the food out of everyone's mouth and to sleep on the streets. With small business driven out and tourism gone. They will follow Vallejo into bankruptcy and their leaders out of a job. SF is too expensive, let the rich morons burn their dollars while everyone else get more for their buck elsewhere. Get out while you can. The city is a urinal cesspool.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

We used to go up to the city at least two weekends a month, and we probably spent an average of $400 each visit. That's $800 a month from one couple. It's become so unfriendly, so oppressive, and so unappealing, that we haven't been in almost a year, and really have no desire to return. In fact, we routinely discourage friends and family from visiting SF.

So does San Francisco's oppressive attitude cost the city money? You betcha. Multiply us by thousands of others (we're certainly not alone) and they are losing many times what they strongarm people over.

I also don't understand why SF residents just "complain" about this only-getting-worse situation. You guys elected these people! You can vote them out of office. But you NEVER do. And if you do, you replace them with people who are just as bad or worse.

Seriously, San Francisco looks nice on a postcard, but more and more people are learning that's about it.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Revenue from the fines should offset taxes.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

I totally agree with this article. I've got more than my fair share of parking tickets and even got my car towed.

Once I parked at a place that says no parking from 12-2pm. It was 3:45pm so I thought I was safe.

I went into a deli to buy a sandwich. When I got out, my car was towed. About 2 feet above the no parking from 12-2pm, there was a no parking from 4-6pm. My car was towed at 4:03pm :(

Another time I park at a place that I thought had no time limit sign.

I came back 2.5 hours later to get a ticket that says I passed the two hours parking limit.

I looked around for a sign and found it like 30 feet away, covered by an overgrown tree.

:(

All I have to say is that SF is becoming a sad, sad place. I used to go there 1-2 times a week to dine, go clubbing and sporting events. I would spend at least 60-100 each time. Now I have not been there in over a year. I do not intend to go there if I do not have to. SF you're losing out on so many people like me.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

I totally agree with this article. I've got more than my fair share of parking tickets and even got my car towed.

Once I parked at a place that says no parking from 12-2pm. It was 3:45pm so I thought I was safe.

I went into a deli to buy a sandwich. When I got out, my car was towed. About 2 feet above the no parking from 12-2pm, there was a no parking from 4-6pm. My car was towed at 4:03pm :(

Another time I park at a place that I thought had no time limit sign.

I came back 2.5 hours later to get a ticket that says I passed the two hours parking limit.

I looked around for a sign and found it like 30 feet away, covered by an overgrown tree.

:(

All I have to say is that SF is becoming a sad, sad place. I used to go there 1-2 times a week to dine, go clubbing and sporting events. I would spend at least 60-100 each time. Now I have not been there in over a year. I do not intend to go there if I do not have to. SF you're losing out on so many people like me.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Fines are not the only issue. A tow charge of $400 going to the tow company is excessive and makes wonder if there is not an inappropriate relationship between the city and the tow companies. $400 is for tow only and not any storage fees which are similarly excessive.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

I totally agree with this article. I've got more than my fair share of parking tickets and even got my car towed.

Once I parked at a place that says no parking from 12-2pm. It was 3:45pm so I thought I was safe.

I went into a deli to buy a sandwich. When I got out, my car was towed. About 2 feet above the no parking from 12-2pm, there was a no parking from 4-6pm. My car was towed at 4:03pm :(

Another time I park at a place that I thought had no time limit sign.

I came back 2.5 hours later to get a ticket that says I passed the two hours parking limit.

I looked around for a sign and found it like 30 feet away, covered by an overgrown tree.

:(

All I have to say is that SF is becoming a sad, sad place. I used to go there 1-2 times a week to dine, go clubbing and sporting events. I would spend at least 60-100 each time. Now I have not been there in over a year. I do not intend to go there if I do not have to. SF you're losing out on so many people like me.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Is this article from 20 years ago and just fell through a time warp?

I found out the hard way that in San Francisco, if you park illegally, you should expect a ticket. Period.

It's a game of musical chairs. If you pay more in tickets per month than you do for insurance and gasoline, maybe you should pay to rent a garage space or just sell your car.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

San Francisco city is run by thiefs and robbers. SF police found my stolen car and waited two days to inform me to make sure the tow company has enough time to tow my car. My car worth only about $2000 and I have to pay $507 freaking police administration, tow and storage fees. The SF police officer who informed me my car was recoved refused to give his name and phone number. He said he called me from his private phone. I think all these thiefs have taxpayer provided cell phones. I pulled over on the 6th street to check my car for less than 5 mins and they send me parking ticket $75 to my home. I guess these thiefs also have freaking telescope to read the licnese plates.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

This article is the truth. San Francisco has become the Sheriff of Notingham, robbing from the people to pay for their over spending. I used to love to drive to San Francisco shopping and dining, now I avoid going out there like the plague.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

This article is the truth. San Francisco has become the Sheriff of Notingham, robbing from the people to pay for their over spending. I used to love to drive to San Francisco shopping and dining, now I avoid going out there like the plague.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

There's no such thing as law enforcement when it comes to traffic. Its now called "fundraising".

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

They are just a greedy bunch of assholes!!!

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

SF is the laughing stock of the country. What else do the gays want to complain about? the weather? With no money left, let the government cannibalise the citizens, taking the food out of everyone's mouth and to sleep on the streets. With small business driven out and tourism gone. They will follow Vallejo into bankruptcy and their leaders out of a job. SF is too expensive, let the rich morons burn their dollars while everyone else get more for their buck elsewhere. Get out while you can. The city is a urinal cesspool!

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

MTA is a cartel with no regard for anyone. They can do what ever they want and are not accountable to anyone. Any proposition or bond that goes on a ballot to control this parasite of an agency will get my vote. the same goes for the police in this town. Most of these cops live outside of SF and come into town to corral the citizens that pay their salary. It's outrageous! I use suppoort propositions or bond to increase their benefits, but not any more. Tthey don't deserve it.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Yes, let fire the person who puts a price on fines.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011


Even though I was born in San Francisco,after reading this article I do not
intend to go there again.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Tickets are clearly a profit center in SF. I went to the Hall of Justice yesterday to contest a ticket. After 30 minutes in line, I asked a Department of Transportation worker how much longer I would be waiting. When she said "2 Hours" - I quipped that I know understood the tickets were a revenue program for the City. She smiled and told me - "2 hours in line and a court date in February" or you can simply pay the fine" and handed me an envelope. A lot more brazen than any corporation I have ever met...

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Sf is a shit hole. It's neo-liberal, full of people that have no desire to adhere to principles, not even principles of their own making, live under the umbrella of an incompetent black-mailing government without complaint. Fuck that town.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Oh no....I broke the law and it costs too much.

Read the signs. Obey the signs.

If you disobey the signs, you'll get a ticket.

Just like the stereotypical small town speed trap: expect a ticket if you break the law.

If you cannot possibly follow the law with your vehicle, it's time to downsize or sell it. Period.

If your car causes you to sin, sell your car.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Tax the nudists. You should pay to bare your ass.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

This is what happens when the city doesn't know how to balance the budget... they pass on these outrages traffic fines on to it's citizens.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Tax the nudists. You should pay to bare your ass.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Uh, I was with you until you brought up Harding. He was a convicted sex offender wanted in Washington. He was dumb enough to try and ride MUNI for free. Had he actually paid the fare, he would still probably be free and wanted. Irony is a bitch, huh?

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Tax the nudists. You should pay to bare your ass.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

I'm really glad I moved my family out of SF years ago, we are trying as much as possible not to go to any parts of SF.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

San Francisco is a lovely city.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

It's pure sensationalism to bring up the K. Harding situation. Well, guess what? That idiot WAS running from cops checking for ticket jumpers. but he was killed because he turned and fired at the police; evading the $2 fare was the least of his intents. He was wanted for questioning as a person of interest in a homicide, had a weapon on him, and was in violation of his parole. Still want to make his story about fare evasion? Mr. Lam makes it sound like high fares cause citizens' deaths - what garbage writing. And yeah, that thug was so good with a gun, he managed to cap himself. Sounds strange, so the police must be lying, right, Mr. Lam? They honestly have nothing better to do than shoot some low-life running away from a fare-evasion charge. That's a righteous thing over which these cops would throw their careers away. It's one thing to be a liberal, but it's quite another to be an ignorant fool writing inflammatory "facts".

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Yet when people drive down the street with their windows down and their hip hop BLARING so loud it makes the license plates of OTHER cars vibrate, the cops sit there and pick their nose instead of levying a fine for disturbing the peace. The reason is clear: it's easier and safer to ticket the cleaning lady with the Corolla and broken English than a large, muscled African American male who's in all probability packing.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Yet when people drive down the street with their windows down and their hip hop BLARING so loud it makes the license plates of OTHER cars vibrate, the cops sit there and pick their nose instead of levying a fine for disturbing the peace. The reason is clear: it's easier and safer to ticket the cleaning lady with the Corolla and broken English than a large, muscled African American male who's in all probability packing.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

It is scary to think if people stop committing parking violations, then the revenue will go down. What will the fine next?

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

It's pure sensationalism to bring up the K. Harding situation. Well, guess what? That idiot WAS running from cops checking for ticket jumpers. but he was killed because he turned and fired at the police; evading the $2 fare was the least of his intents. He was wanted for questioning as a person of interest in a homicide, had a weapon on him, and was in violation of his parole. Still want to make his story about fare evasion? Mr. Lam makes it sound like high fares cause citizens' deaths - what garbage writing. And yeah, that thug was so good with a gun, he managed to cap himself. Sounds strange, so the police must be lying, right, Mr. Lam? They honestly have nothing better to do than shoot some low-life running away from a fare-evasion charge. That's a righteous thing over which these cops would throw their careers away. It's one thing to be a liberal, but it's quite another to be an ignorant fool writing inflammatory "facts".

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

It's pure sensationalism to bring up the K. Harding situation. Well, guess what? That idiot WAS running from cops checking for ticket jumpers. but he was killed because he turned and fired at the police; evading the $2 fare was the least of his intents. He was wanted for questioning as a person of interest in a homicide, had a weapon on him, and was in violation of his parole. Still want to make his story about fare evasion? Mr. Lam makes it sound like high fares cause citizens' deaths - what garbage writing. And yeah, that thug was so good with a gun, he managed to cap himself. Sounds strange, so the police must be lying, right, Mr. Lam? They honestly have nothing better to do than shoot some low-life running away from a fare-evasion charge. That's a righteous thing over which these cops would throw their careers away. It's one thing to be a liberal, but it's quite another to be an ignorant fool writing inflammatory "facts".

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

How true how true, cars and public transportation pedestrians get slammed for 'bad behaviour" and the bik nazis merrity run havoc and flaunt their supposed superiority for not being afoot or with motor...

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Yet when people drive down the street with their windows down and their hip hop BLARING so loud it makes the license plates of OTHER cars vibrate, the cops sit there and pick their nose instead of levying a fine for disturbing the peace. The reason is clear: it's easier and safer to ticket the cleaning lady with the Corolla and broken English than a large, muscled African American male who's in all probability packing.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Yet when people drive down the street with their windows down and their hip hop BLARING so loud it makes the license plates of OTHER cars vibrate, the cops sit there and pick their nose instead of levying a fine for disturbing the peace. The reason is clear: it's easier and safer to ticket the cleaning lady with the Corolla and broken English than a large, muscled African American male who's in all probability packing.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

I got a ticket for literally 30 seconds late on a meter. The damn meter maid waited for time to expire then got out of the buggy and ticketed me. I was a block away trying to get through a light and cross the street. I couldn't believe it. 30 seconds and they wait...... guess what....since then the city of san fran has not received one dime of my consumer dollar. never again after having to work in the city on assignment for 9 months I quit the city. Love the city life hate the criminal tax and spend, fine and spend city government. The epitome of anti-consumer, anti just about everything. Funny when you get so liberalized that you become more anti something than pro anything

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

I never had any tickets on my car until I moved to SF. I received $700 worth of tickets in my car in less than 1 year, meter tickets $55, street cleaning $55 and the biggest one parking in a bus zone $245. I never parked in a bus stop but I may have dropped of my elderly aunt at bart on 24th street. I never received a ticket on my car so I never knew about the ticket which went to my old address and when i finally received the ticket it went from $245 to $345. Yikes and I was unemployed at the time.

I was told that the meter readers had a quota of 80 tickets a day. I am glad I no longer live in SF it was so expensive to have a car between the tickets and getting my windows broken I decided to move and I am very happy not to be living in the city of crazed meter readers.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Yet when people drive down the street with their windows down and their hip hop BLARING so loud it makes the license plates of OTHER cars vibrate, the cops sit there and pick their nose instead of levying a fine for disturbing the peace. The reason is clear: it's easier and safer to ticket the cleaning lady with the Corolla and broken English than a large, muscled African American male who's in all probability packing.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Great place to land a plane and rent a car for all points elsewhere which is what I do with my friends and family when they visit.

Hard for me to wrap my head around the number $112milliion revenue in fines...how would the city survive if we were saints instead fallible humans?

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

I never had any tickets on my car until I moved to SF. I received $700 worth of tickets in my car in less than 1 year, meter tickets $55, street cleaning $55 and the biggest one parking in a bus zone $245. I never parked in a bus stop but I may have dropped of my elderly aunt at bart on 24th street. I never received a ticket on my car so I never knew about the ticket which went to my old address and when i finally received the ticket it went from $245 to $345. Yikes and I was unemployed at the time.

I was told that the meter readers had a quota of 80 tickets a day. I am glad I no longer live in SF it was so expensive to have a car between the tickets and getting my windows broken I decided to move and I am very happy not to be living in the city of crazed meter readers.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

I got a ticket for literally 30 seconds late on a meter. The damn meter maid waited for time to expire then got out of the buggy and ticketed me. I was a block away trying to get through a light and cross the street. I couldn't believe it. 30 seconds and they wait...... guess what....since then the city of san fran has not received one dime of my consumer dollar. never again after having to work in the city on assignment for 9 months I quit the city. Love the city life hate the criminal tax and spend, fine and spend city government. The epitome of anti-consumer, anti just about everything. Funny when you get so liberalized that you become more anti something than pro anything

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

The City of Walnut Creek has a sham citation appeal process. They are using parking machines that are foreign to most users and even when money is placed in the machine, if the ticket is not taken and placed just right, you can receive a parking violation for $50.00. If you try to appeal, the administrator is not objective. In stead, she is just part of useless bureaucracy meant to secure payment of any issued citation.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

The City of Walnut Creek has a sham citation appeal process. They are using parking machines that are foreign to most users and even when money is placed in the machine, if the ticket is not taken and placed just right, you can receive a parking violation for $50.00. If you try to appeal, the administrator is not objective. In stead, she is just part of useless bureaucracy meant to secure payment of any issued citation. Do what I do: make it a policy not to visit or shop in any city like SF or Walnut Creek. There are plenty of other places to shop.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

I parked 10 blocks from fishermans wharf on a Sunday morning six years ago---When I came back 6 hours later I had a $56.00 parking ticket on my window. I have never been back to the city ---never well again---San Fransisco is all about citations and corruption---

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

This is every where... in Texas some parking tickets are $1400...... This must end!

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

I was fined $43.00 for parking more than 18 inches from the curb. there goes family nite out on friday.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Suggest that meter maids, et al be paid minimum wage. Administrative personnel salaries be set at not more than two (20 TIMES minimum wage. A gross reduction in salaries would obviate the need for such high fines to run the City

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Are there any organizations that are fighting the MTA and the Board of Supervisors parking policies? Please let me know. I live in the city. Thanks.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Are there any organizations that are fighting the MTA and the Board of Supervisors parking policies? Please let me know. I live in the city. Thanks.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

I travel back East on business and don't dare tell people I'm from San Francisco. It IS INDEED the laughing stock of the nation. Run by a bunch of monkeys who don't know the first thing about what government is really for, and the police force gone rogue thinking the only way they can keep their jobs (and lush retirement) is to raise revenue through tickets. They say we need more taxes to keep our cops, but I have never seen so many cops in my life. They are everywhere, watching you, monitoring you, ready to swoop down and snag some revenue. Disgusting. UnAmerican.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

It is scary to think if people stop committing parking violations, then the revenue will go down. What will the fine next?

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Like I said before lets kick SF out of the United States we in Northern California don't claim SF any way.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

SF is the laughing stock of the country. What else do the gays want to complain about? the weather? With no money left, let the government cannibalise the citizens, taking the food out of everyone's mouth and to sleep on the streets. With small business driven out and tourism gone. They will follow Vallejo into bankruptcy and their leaders out of a job. SF is too expensive, let the rich morons burn their dollars while everyone else get more for their buck elsewhere. Get out while you can. The city is a urinal cesspool!

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

SF is the laughing stock of the country. What else do the gays want to complain about? the weather? With no money left, let the government cannibalise the citizens, taking the food out of everyone's mouth and to sleep on the streets. With small business driven out and tourism gone. They will follow Vallejo into bankruptcy and their leaders out of a job. SF is too expensive, let the rich morons burn their dollars while everyone else get more for their buck elsewhere. Get out while you can. The city is a urinal cesspool!

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

Here's a thought. March down Telegraph to the UC President's office in downtown Oakland and protest there. How can you expect the oligarchs in their ivory tower to notice anything? Once they go to work everyday seeing broken windows and trashed offices, they might realize you guys mean business. Protesting at Cal has become a cliche, no one cares anymore. Let people who paid a lot for their classes learn something, and the banging of pots and pans go to the ears of administration.
Everybody knows the reason why there are more female college students today is because sex work pays so well. ($1000/week on average. Stripping is about the same. webcam shows, etc.) So well, Craigslist had to shut down the escort links at the request of Attorney Generals. Backpage is next. The UC Regents are pimps willing to whore out someone's daughters at a drop of the hat. They force upon women to make choices at a young age that they should not have to make: drop out of college or open wide.
Male students working in retail or other minimum wage jobs to save for college is a joke. Look, if you're smart enough to be at Cal, you know the education costs are outpacing your paycheck so why bother to work? Not working?, why bother to even look? Let the self-centered, self-serving hippie baby boomers scramble for their retirement. Why pay taxes that's going to Social Security and Medicare and no financial aid to you! -the taxpayer? You're paying into a government sanctioned Ponzi fund that you'll never be a recipient of. You can't possibly believe that working for nickels and dimes is going to pay for college. This is America's quiet scandal.
This country is long overdue for education reform. College must be free! It is a human right. You take away our lands and give them to the banks so we can no longer hunt and gather freely, we have to play by your game of jumping through hoops at college and at work to survive. You can get a rate contract with gyms, cars, mobile phones, insurance, rent, anything except college. One day it's this cost, then overnight it's this cost. American students and parents heartache and heart attack each year as voted by UC Regents to raise the tuition. How is a student supposed to concentrate with studies and come up with money for the new costs? The UC is becoming a country club, as higher education reaches full circle, and once again becomes a hobby of the rich. Democracy is killed off by capitalism and nepotism. How else do you explain the rich get mega rich? What middle-class?
A college senior can graduate with a tuition higher than when it was at freshman level, only four years! How is anyone suppose to budget around this? This is telling prospective students to bend over and take it. Why isn't government protecting students so a freshman can expect to pay the same tuition rate through graduation. It's obvious that the skyrocketing costs of higher education has more to do with padding the funds of pensioners and little to do with operating costs since many were cut anyway. It's ridiculous that the people who should have saved for retirement wisely are now depending on the student population with no degree, no jobs, no money. If people had money to pay for college tuition now, they wouldn't bother with college in the first place. Students spend more annually in college that what they will make in their first years of income, that is if someone is still hiring! Meanwhile, the loans pile up.
The University of China, excuse me- I meant to say the University of California is depending on out of state students to fix their financial woes leaving community college students by the wayside. Seats that are taken from Americans and given to the highest bidder. Bad enough they already have our jobs. What should be pointed out to the administration, is that students that are neglected here are more likely to throw very large stones, something that cannot be done across the world...hint hint wink wink. The UC Regents are sending a negative message to today's youth, even if you work hard in a community college for years it doesn't mean anything to them. But they insist on taking your taxes. That is taxation without representation. It's time to make higher education the utmost priority in California again. We were great, and we can be great once again. We just need to rattle the cage harder. Don't let the gates of college close on future and current students because some rent a cop is holding a pepper spray. This is Bear territory Bitches!

V.V.Sarma

Posted Sep 23 2011

I am gratified. So it is not only we the 'Indians' who jump red lights and park haphazardly. The extremely 'good Americans' also are human after all! Of course, it is mostly our own people, who come back with the widest eyes from the Land of Liberty, who are ga-ga about how socially conscious and law abiding the citizens 'back there' are.
Let me tell you about my city Bengaluru. Traffic cops here are totally obsessed with saving you - from yourself. They hide behind corners and catch only two-wheeler riders without helmets. You can happily drive on the wrong-side, park anywhere you please and violate every other traffic rule - the cop doesn't bother. The idea is simple -catch some revenue.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 23 2011

We need serious changes in the political system, we have a lot of lazy people employed (not working).
City jobs are very easy, good pay, good everything,but don"t know how to run city and the only way to do it is by creating fees.If they don"t do their job they shoudn"t get paid.get rid of them.

Anonymous

Posted Sep 24 2011

Kenneth Harding carries a gun and shot himself and now this article tries to rationalize this criminal act on top of another criminal act (stealing bus fare)? Are we that stupid?
are we supposed to let criminals go now because we might harm them?
yes, the fines are outrageously expensive but this attempt to sympathize with a criminal lessens the impact of the article.

Anonymous

Posted Nov 11 2011

Don't break the law, don't get a ticket. Not that hard. Reading this tea-bagger crap on NAM is depressing.

Anonymous

Posted Jun 7 2012

I was 10 minutes late in a 2 hr parking and they towed my car, 5 blocks I had to borrow the $ 394 to get it out , I am a single mother ... A full time student and broke , I watched several people give up their car that day , and I am determined to start a petition !

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