The D.C. Dept. of Motor Vehicles is making bank off of motorists and other cities are thinking of following suit.
In 2010, D.C. collected $80.4 million in revenue from parking ticket fines. As of May this year, the government has already collected $50.1 million in fines, according to the D.C.'s DMV.
More cities around the country are following D.C.'s lead and raising parking meter rates and extending enforcement hours in an effort to offset budget shortfalls.
The city employs 204 parking enforcement officers who issued roughly 1.8 million parking tickets last year. As of May this year, these officials have issued 1.1. million tickets, according to AAA Mid-Atlantic.
But there is some hope.
Hearing examiners for the DMV adjudication services tossed out 43 percent of the contested parking tickets during 2010, according to the DMV. Hearing officers in D.C. dismissed nearly 42,000 parking tickets of the 89,068 tickets--that's 47 percent--adjudicated as of May.
In addition to increased parking meter rates, the District government also increased the residential parking permit fee from $15 to $25.
If you've received a parking ticket recently, you should request a hearing with proof in hand. For example, if you park at a broken meter, call the District's 311 number and then snap a picture of the meter with your phone. Also, call the D.C. parking meter repair hotline at (202) 541-6030, give the meter location and number and keep a written record of the confirmation number provided by the hotline operator as well as the time and date.