BANGOR — New parking rules that require the use of handicapped placards and that increase overtime charges are now in effect, Bangor police Sgt. Chip Hodges announced in a statement.
State law requires those with disabilities to have license plates that show the International Symbol of Access, a rolling wheelchair, or to use a placard with the symbol that is typically hung from the vehicle’s rearview mirror.
Those who violate the law in Bangor could face a $200 ticket.
Drivers who have regular or disabled veteran license plates without the symbol and who park in designated disabled-parking spots must use their placards or face a $25 ticket under rules city councilors endorsed last month.
“If [the placard is] not visible, they would get a $200 ticket and then it would be up to them to come in and produce a valid placard, at which time the waiver fee would be dropped from $200 to $25,” Hodges said. “If it’s not visible, then the officer or the parking ticket person would have no way to know if they have one or not.”
The new rules are designed to encourage those with placards to use them, he said.
“I know I’ve written a lot of tickets for handicap parking, and the vast majority are people who have placards who have not put them out,” Hodges said.
“The result was that the city was forgiving many tickets that could have been easily avoided by properly displaying the placard as required,” he said in the press release. “It also meant that much of the effort being put into monitoring handicap parking around the city was for naught.”
Fines for parking at an expired meter and overtime parking have increased from $12 to $15.
“As with all of the parking violation waiver fees, these double if not paid within thirty days,” Hodges’ press release states. “Therefore a handicap violation would be $400, failure to display a disability placard would be $50, and overtime parking would be $30.”