New York City Council wants to end parking ticket break for delivery trucks

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Tim Fleischer reports on the push to end parking ticket breaks for delivery trucks in NYC.

A double-parked delivery truck with a parking ticket on the windshield is a very common sight in the New York City.

For the past 15 years, trucking and delivery companies caught a favorable break by paying a pre-set fine for not challenging tickets in court, under the city's Stipulated Parking Fine Program.

"If they get one ticket or 10, each one of these double parking tickets is wiped out to zero," said Glen Bolofsky, who calls himself a parking ticket watchdog and is president of ParkingTicket.com.

He and others are now pushing an effort to eliminate the current practice.

"Our streets are clogged up with delivery trucks in the middle of the day where there really isn't a consequence, so these tickets are majorly reduced," Councilman Costa Constantinides said.

He is one of several other members who have announced legislation calling for the abolishment of the controversial program, with safety being one of the main reasons.

"When you have a large truck parked in a bike lane and forcing that bicyclist out into the street or forcing a pedestrian to walk around that, that is just ripe for danger," Constantinides said.

A spokesperson with the Trucking Association of New York said New York City has inadequate curbside delivery space.

"Dismantling this program is misguided," Kendra Hems wrote. "It will likely cost the city money, increase congestion and result in consumers paying more for products."

But Bolofsky also claims the program discriminates against those who can least afford a ticket.

"The clergy doesn't get it," he said. "The mayor doesn't get it. The City Council people don't get it. Teachers don't get that break. The disabled don't get that break."

Two other bills call for city-contracted deliveries during overnight hours and giving pedestrians extra time to cross some 400 intersections. Traffic measures proponents believe they are meant to meet a rapidly changing traffic landscape.

The Trucking Association of New York released a full statement regarding the parking issue:

"New York's economy is dependent upon consumers being able to access goods and services - and the vast majority of those goods and services arrive via truck. In Manhattan alone there are nearly 100,000 establishments that receive over 350,000 deliveries a day. The reality is that New York provides grossly inadequate curbside delivery space and forces delivery trucks to compete with an increasingly crowded streetscape. The stipulated fine program, imperfect as it is, at least acknowledges this deficiency. Dismantling this program is misguided. It will likely cost the city money, increase congestion and result in consumers paying more for products. It is also important to recognize that there are over 2,500 operators enrolled in the program, the vast majority of which are small businesses. We look forward to working with the Council on ways to fix the core of the problem, namely, finding innovative solutions to improve curbside delivery access, including expansion of the off-peak delivery program."

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