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Friday, July 19, 2024

Bowser Extends Ticket Amnesty Program

Do you have a few pink slips in your glove box you still haven’t taken care of?

A new four-month ticket amnesty program set to expire Sept. 30 has been extended. Now, you can arrange to pay only the issued fines on your tickets until Dec. 31 –even those issued before the pandemic.

The amnesty covers parking, photo enforcement (incuding speed, red-light and stop-sign cameras) and minor moving violations issued by law enforcement.

All penalties or late fees on the tickets will be waived. Only the original ticket fee will need to be paid. That is not insignificant; without the program DC traffic and parking tickets not paid within 30 days are doubled. That means that a $150 ticket becomes a $300 debt. If the ticket remains unpaid for 90 days, it is referred for collection and faces an added 20 percent surcharge—taking the $150 fine up to  $360.

Mayor Muriel Bowser (D) announced the ticket amnesty April 19. About 32,000 people have paid $44 million in fines in those four months, she said at a Sept. 27th news conference. $12 million of that came from drivers out of the region; 36 percent came from Maryland drivers, 26 percent from DC residents, and 20 percent from Virignia drivers.

That it itself is significant, as WAMU’s Martin Austermuhle pointed out: lacking a reciprocity agreement with Maryland and Virginia, DC has no way to force out-state-drivers to pay fines.

The program covers all tickets issued on or before December 30, 2021, including all of the above types of tickets issued in DC “since the beginning of time,” Deputy Mayor for Operations and Infrastructure (DMOI) Lucinda Babers at the conference.

In April, Babers estimated there is about $400 million in outstanding parking tickets and that, if all those eligible take advantage of the program it would bring in approximately half that amount.

Learn more by visiting ticketamnesty.dc.gov

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