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Letter: Parking tickets and classism in New London


Friday, August 10, 2018

Local police profiting from dishonest parking violations doesn’t seem like a big problem here in New Hampshire. Sure, we’ve all forgotten to top off the meter and found a $5 ticket on our car at some point. However, when you park your car next to a sign post with no sign on it, on a road where many people clearly park, look around and see zero “No Parking” signs, you might be a bit incredulous at finding a $25 ticket from the New London Police Department.

When this happened to me at a local public swimming spot, I was shocked. This was not at all reflective of my positive past experiences with local law enforcement.

What small town has the resources for a parking officer but not the resources to clearly post “No Parking” areas?

When I contested the ticket, an officer politely met with me and agreed to look at the area to see if the ticket was justified. Sure enough, two weeks later there were two brand new signs where I had suggested they put them. To my surprise, almost a month after the ticket was issued, I received a letter from the New London Police Department informing me that I would still be fined.

The alternative to paying the $25 fine would be to go to court and risk having to pay the $250 minimum fine if I lost. This sends the message that only people who can afford to gamble $250 and take time off from work can challenge tickets.

I will pay the $25 fine, but I will do so lamenting the fact that following through and getting justice might just be for people with means, and not for people like me.

SARAH PIEDMONT

North Sutton