Rapid City is changing it’s downtown parking system, and updating the method for collecting parking tickets. There’s a digital record of parking tickets that vehicle owners can access and pay online.
In Rapid City, nearly 12 thousand parking tickets are unpaid, while about 700 vehicles are on the boot list. Darrell Shoemaker is the Communications Coordinator for the city. He says the old method of paying paper tickets in cash wasn’t always reliable drivers.
“A lot of those tickets, the vast majority of them, are the single tickets. They’re ten dollars, they’re 15 dollars. And they get those tickets, sometimes they blow away, sometimes they end up in the kitchen drawer, sometimes they end up in the backseat. They basically get forgotten.”
The city keeps a record of parking tickets based on VIN and license plate numbers. Shoemaker says sometimes tickets are uncollectible because tourists and locals leave without paying or drivers change cars and license plates. He says the new online system allows people to access their own records.
“The online system that we’re moving to we think is going to be a more convenient tool and we’re already starting to see some positive, very initial data on it. We’re already seeing some people checking out their system, paying some of their old parking tickets--that sort of thing. So we see this as being a convenient tool for people to check and see how many tickets are in the system. So they may say ‘oh my gosh, I’m on the boot list’ or I might have more ticket and I didn’t realize that I had that many.”
Downtown parking violations are ten dollars. A five-dollar late fee added on after three days has instead increased to ten dollars after a week. Shoemaker says it’s an additional fine after a month.
“Under our new downtown parking system moving forward, if they get a ticket there’ll be information right there showing the app that they can go right then and there and pay the ticket.”
Shoemaker say money collected from parking tickets goes towards downtown
parking enforcement and funds the city.