Sheehan: Albany parking fines way up, despite fewer tickets
October 19, 2010 at 10:22 am by Jordan Carleo-Evangelist
A year after the so-called ‘ghost ticket’ investigation consumed the Common Council and helped bring about the defeat of longtime city Treasurer Betty Barnette, Albany has raked in nearly $1 million more in parking fines and surcharges so far this year.
That’s despite the fact that the police department’s public service officers are writing fewer tickets, said new Treasurer Kathy Sheehan.
Sheehan said the bump in collections is thanks largely to the city’s new computer software, unveiled in April, that helps it better track tickets and more aggressively seek collection.
The downside is that Albany’s giving up 7.5 percent to its new software vendor, Complus Data Innovations, which has so far totaled about $200,000, Sheehan said.
Sheehan said she is still working to get a solid figure for the city’s collection rate but said she believes it to be in the neighborhood of 85 percent.
One of the failings of the previous system, Sheehan has said, was that it made it very difficult to calculate what percentage of tickets were being collected. But Sheehan said she roughly estimates the city’s previous collection rate around 60 percent.
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