The City of Toronto has enacted a series of new parking regulations. These include increasing fines for motorists who commit parking offenses during rush hours, moving to a fixed fine system for parking tickets, towing habitual parking ticket offenders and fines for vehicles with expired license plates.
Vehicles that are stopping, standing or parked on busy commuter routes during rush hours, in any area with time restricted parking, are subject to a $150 fine. Rush hours are defined as 6:00 A.M. – 10:00 A.M. and 3:00 P.M. – 7:00 P.M. These new regulations apply to motorists that block both roads and bicycle lanes.
Unlawfully standing, stopping or parking on the City’s roads during rush hours contributes to traffic congestion, which costs the economy money in lost productivity. It also prevents Torontonians from getting to work and home sooner to spend more time with their families. Reducing gridlock is better for air quality and the environment.
More than 76% of ticket recipients make multiple trial requests in a year. In 60% of cases where appellants are convicted, parking ticket fines were cut in half. This indicates that repeat parking offenders are appealing all of their tickets to pay a lesser fine.
Moving to a fixed fine system will reduce the amount of parking ticket trail requests allowing other residents to access the court system in a more timely manner. Moreover, it reduces court costs for taxpayers as fewer resources will be wasted on frivolous trial requests as some of these offenders have learned how to use the system to their advantage.
In January 2014, Toronto launched the habitual offender towing initiative. Under this program, Toronto Police Services will tow illegally parked automobiles where the owner has 3 or more unpaid parking tickets and at least 120 days have elapsed since the latest unpaid ticket infraction.
The final parking regulation change involves expired license plates. Toronto is committed to ensuring that cars parked on city streets are safe and licensed. That’s why we’re making it illegal for automobiles without valid license plates to park on city streets.
This initiative deters illegal parking and owners abandoning their vehicles on city streets at taxpayers’ expense. Automobile owners who violate this by-law are subject to a $40 fine.