Why Bakersfield police took 3-month break from writing parking tickets

Much of the public parking in downtown Bakersfield, Calif., has time limits, ranging from 30 to 90 minutes. (KBAK/KBFX photo)

The Bakersfield Police Department is nearing the end of an approximately three-month grace period for parking tickets, warning on Thursday that soon parking violations will again have financial consequences.

The grace period was somewhat forced on them by the unexpected departure of a private company that previously served as a middle man between the city and ticket payers.

When the company discontinued their arrangement with the city in December, Bakersfield lost the ability to collect on parking citations.

State law would've allowed for the the city to bill drivers for much older violations, but a local guideline sets a 30-day window in which the recipient of a parking ticket must receive their bill. When it was realized there would be a lengthy period without another vendor, the department opted to simply give warnings instead.

But the free-for-all with those 30-minute downtown zones may be over. Police Sgt. Ryan Kroeker said Thursday a new contract is in place, and the city will be ready to resume billing within about a month.

"If somebody's cited today then more than likely within the 30 days that will be processed and the individual will be fined," he said.

close video ad
Unmutetoggle ad audio on off