ANN ARBOR – Visitors of the downtown area, take note: Starting Aug. 1, parking tickets for expired meters will jump from $20 to $25.
Discounted fines will still apply for those who pay their tickets within 24 hours, but the cost will soon be $15 instead of $10.
City staff recommended higher fines to the tune of $35 per ticket and a $20 discount rate for those who pay early, but the council decided a $5 increase was sufficient for now.
(Photo: Meredith Bruckner)
While visitors and locals alike have their fair share of grievances with parking, so do local businesses. Some council members argued that higher penalties may decrease foot traffic downtown and hurt business for shops and restaurants.
Others felt high penalties were necessary for compliance.
According to data shared by the city's staff, Ann Arbor is on par with other college towns. East Lansing fines are $20 and $10 if paid within 24 hours. In Austin, Texas, fines are $30 and $15 if paid within 24 hours. The highest penalty is in Detroit, which fines violators $45 for expired meters.
The council said the ticket fines may be changed in coming years, and it is still mulling extending enforced parking hours into the evening -- a topic of debate for downtown business owners, visitors and the city.