We've Got Issues - Parking Tickets
As I neared my 06' Cadillac CTS parked on a residential street near SMC's main campus, I noticed that dreadful, small, rectangular-shaped piece of paper dangling from my windshield - a parking ticket! Though I was given a two-hour limit, which I'm still positive I adhered to, the total amount of my fine came to a whopping $64. Since when has the city of Santa Monica been so interested in cleaning out my wallet?
Sixty-four dollars! That's a fancy dinner at the Four Seasons Hotel! Four shares of Yahoo stock! One hundred and twenty-eight apple pies from McDonalds! A 3-unit course at Santa Monica College!
The minute you turn away, blink an eye, or go over a single minute on your meter, a meter maid has already written a ticket and disappeared, leaving you with a hefty fine.
I've even turned away from school and missed class because I was afraid of receiving a parking ticket. Way to go Santa Monica, now you're dissuading students from attending for fear of overzealous parking enforcement officers.
The lavish aquamarine border on your ticket fails to assuage the nausea induced by spiked fines and short parking times, but nice try Santa Monica.
According to USA Today, Santa Monica was one of the cities to raise its parking fines. In 2009, the fine boosted from $40 to $50. Presently, the parking fine sits in the mid-sixties. I get the feeling those numbers will only increase.
Listen, I completely agree on obeying rules and laws, but can't the city of Santa Monica find other (more productive) ways to increase revenue for its government? An awesome aquarium closer than Long Beach? I know, maybe an NFL team you can tax the hell out of? Legalize and tax Marijuana? But seriously—can we have an NFL team?
Maybe it's not just the city's fault. As a student, I decide to park on the street because I'm not willing to deal with the chaos in the school's "lack of available parking". If I do venture into SMC's parking garages, I'll be sure to carry my trusted helmet and sword.
"OMG!" said former SMC student and Business Administration major Taryn Spivack. "The fact that I lived twenty-minutes away from school, but had to leave an hour before my classes just to hopefully find a spot was absurd."
"And I probably had gotten over ten parking citations for the meters," said Spivack.
I have an idea: What if Apple develops a new application called, "Meter Maid Tracker"? Okay, cool, sounds good.