Parking agencies get tickets in D.C. too

WASHINGTON — Last Thursday, a D.C. employee parked a government van at 300 M Street Southwest during the afternoon rush, blocking traffic heading out of town near the Waterfront.

The Department of Public Works ticketed the vehicle, which belonged to the D.C. Department of Transportation. The ticket carries a $100 fine. It was written at 4:10 p.m. By 4:25 p.m., the DDOT van was gone, but the ticket will stand.

“DDOT employees are not exempt from peak-hour restrictions. They are held to the same standard, and the employee is expected to pay any citation themselves. This is a strict agency policy,” says DDOT spokesman Reggie Sanders.

According to D.C. Department of Motor Vehicle records, this is the only outstanding ticket on the DDOT van ticketed.

D.C. Council members are also not exempt from rush-hour violations. They are exempt from more routine violations, such as expired meters, during official business, but cannot commit safety violations, such as parking in a loading zone, near a fire hydrant or during rush hours.

This summer, D.C. Council member Marion Barry had to pay $1,460 in fines for unpaid parking tickets to the DMV. Barry did not have his registration withheld, as is routine practice for D.C. residents with unpaid parking tickets.

The DMV also can withhold the money from an individual’s income tax refund or place a claim with credit agencies, affecting the individual’s credit score. Such measures aren’t possible with organizations.

These measures would be unlikely in this case, since DDOT can track down the employee who signed out the placard inside the vehicle on Thursday. On closer inspection, the placard listed the numbers 067.

D.C. Police are exempt from all tickets while responding to emergency calls, although officers are cautioned against getting tickets during routine duty.

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