Parking Fines
Parking Fines

How city motorists get out of parking fines

THOUSANDS of Brisbane drivers who were unfairly and incorrectly slapped with parking fines have managed to overturn more than $1 million worth of infringement notices.

It comes as new figures obtained by The Courier-Mail reveal the council dished out a massive 220,000 parking fines last year - or about 25 every hour of every day.

Fed up motorists challenged more than 26,000 of these fines, with the council ultimately waiving or overturning about 10,790 of them.

A parking inspector in Brisbane. Picture: Annette Dew
A parking inspector in Brisbane. Picture: Annette Dew

Parking officer error and "compassionate grounds" were among the top five reasons that a parking fine was overturned, as well as "reasonable doubt" and "extenuating circumstances".

The council still managed to rake in about $25.4 million from the fines it issued in 2019, which was the equivalent of about $69,500 every day.

 

 

Community, Arts and Lifestyle Chair Peter Matic said the council would investigate every appealed parking fine, and would work quickly to withdraw them if they were not issued for legitimate reasons.

"We understand that there are sometimes circumstances where a resident may not to be able to pay for their parking or return to their car ahead of the parking meter expiring," he said.

"This is something we will always be considerate of.

"Things such as medical emergencies, broken down vehicles or human error are some of the day-to-day reasons why Council will work with a resident to ensure they are not required to pay an issued an infringement."

Paddington Ward councillor Peter Matic rejected suggestions the council had a parking fine quota. Picture: AAP/David Clark
Paddington Ward councillor Peter Matic rejected suggestions the council had a parking fine quota. Picture: AAP/David Clark

Last year's waived parking fines amounted to about $1.1 million, which was down from the $1.4 million that was waived the previous year when about 30,800 fines were challenged and 13,179 were ultimately repealed.

The total number of parking fines council issued last year also dipped about 9 per cent.

Cr Matic defended the council's tough approach, pointing to the more than 70,000 complaints the council received every year about illegal parking.

 

 

He rejected suggestions the council had a parking fine quota, but claimed Labor would introduce one - pointing to comments that their previous mayoral candidate Rod Harding made in July.

"It is hypocritical for Labor to criticise Council for taking measures to address illegal parking, while calling for enforcement against illegal parking within their Wards," he said.

"Illegal parking is something Brisbane City Council does not tolerate due the serious safety concerns it can cause and also the negative consequences it can have on local businesses."

Labor’s lord mayoral candidate Patrick Condren said parking officers had complained to him about being under pressure to meet revenue targets. (AAP image: John Gass)
Labor’s lord mayoral candidate Patrick Condren said parking officers had complained to him about being under pressure to meet revenue targets. (AAP image: John Gass)

Labor's current lord mayoral candidate, Patrick Condren, claimed he had spoken to parking officers who he said had complained to him about being under pressure to meet revenue targets.

"I'm happy people have got justice but why were so many dodgy tickets written in the first place," he said.

"Everyone accepts there are people who do the wrong thing and deserve to pay the price."

Mr Condren denied Labor would introduce a parking fine quota, saying that the suggestion was "fake news".


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