As a Parking Enforcement Officer, I write parking tickets all day long. I average about 10 an hour that I am actually walking the street. I am not walking all day, we do have other duties besides walking the streets. I have written as few as twelve tickets in a day and as many as seventy-two. I rarely see the people I am writing tickets to. If they come out when we are writing, we generally will stop the ticket and call it an interruption. Most of the time, people are very nice when they catch you writing the ticket. They ask you to stop or if it is too late. Many of the people paid their meters and are late coming back to their cars for some reason. What blows my mind is how many people do not even try to pay and will flat out tell us that. We also have people park in loading zones, red zones, bus zones, and handicap spots with the same stories. I hear so many excuses as to why they didn’t pay but they are all saying the same thing, “Here is why the law doesn’t apply to me.”

Here are some of the excuses I hear frequently:

” I was only going to be a minute.”

” I am waiting for someone.” (In one of the forbidden zones)

” I always pay but I had to drop something off.”

“I didn’t have any change.” (Many of our meters take credit cards, all take cards you                                                                         can purchase.)

“I didn’t see the meter.”

“I’m not from around here.”

So many people think that we “Meter Maids” are mean and unfair. We do not write the laws. We just enforce them. Writing tickets is not my favorite part of my job. I love being able to meet many people, run into friends, pet puppies (and snakes the other day), know what is going on everywhere in town and getting paid to exercise. Just feed your meters so I get paid to walk and do the fun things and not listen to the reasons the rules do not apply to you.