More little green envelopes are appearing on windshields in the City of Richmond. Between Dec. 1 and Jan. 31, Richmond parking officers issued 15 percent more citations than during the same period a year ago: 12,878 compared with 11,205. The increased ticketing has increased the revenue collected during the same period by 11 percent, from $413,802 to $460,150.
City spokesman Michael Wallace said the increase is due to the addition of the Carver parking district and an increase of enforcement hours. In December 2007 and January 2008, parking officers logged 3,900 hours. In the same two-month period a year later, they logged 4,300 hours.
The city’s parking enforcement is contracted to a private company, Lanier Parking Service. The company receives 3 percent of the amount of issued fines and 3 percent of meter collections. It also receives reimbursement for expenses.
Wallace said enforcement hours vary from month to month based on employee turnover and attendance.
The city has 15 officers writing tickets, but there are seven in training, said Steven Bergin, Richmond’s parking manger. Enforcement hours will increase when those officers hit the streets, he said.
Setting the number of officers is a collaborative effort between Lanier and the city, but ultimately the city makes the final call, Bergin said.
Bergin said officers do not have quotas or performance goals, but their daily reports are scrutinized for large gaps of time.
Parking citations generate about $3 million in revenue for the city each year, he said.
Al Harris is a BizSense reporter. He knows many of the City’s best parking spots and has yet to get a ticket.