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Parking ticket trial surcharge being considered

City officials are considering charging drivers a fee if they lose a parking ticket fight in court.

The $12.75 surcharge is being considered on top of the regular fine for those convicted in trial-by-requests in an effort to reduce court costs.

Another proposal suggests setting a fine that can’t be reduced in court by a justice of the peace.

Mayor Rob Ford seemed somewhat skeptical about the idea.

“It might be perceived as a cash grab, and I do not support cash grabs,” he said.

Most drivers who fight a ticket at trial hope to get their fine reduced in court, or bank on a police officer no-show.

The city issues just under three million yellow slips a year — about 300,000 drivers ticketed fight the fines in court. Most trial-by-requests end in convictions, and many end with reduced fines.

According to Anthony Fabrizi, City of Toronto parking operations, the courts are being clogged unnecessarily and the surcharge would act as a deterrent to those abusing the system. 

“Of the 300,000 parking ticket trials that folks are requesting every year, only about 40 per cent of those…show up. And we’ve concluded that 60 per cent of these folks never had intentions of showing up in the first place, and so they are really abusing the court system.”

A report on the proposed surcharge is going to a committee June 28, according to a report in the Toronto Star.