FOI At Work: D.C. Unrivaled in Parking Ticket Revenue

The cost of gasoline may be gnawing a hole in many wallets, but the cost of going nowhere in the District cost people who failed to mind the parking meter a record $92.6 million last year.

That amount for fiscal 2011 was more than $12 million higher than the previous year, according to data that the American Automobile Association obtained under a Freedom of Information Act request.

“When it comes to the sheer number of parking tickets written each day and the overall amount of parking ticket fines collected, the District of Columbia is the envy of cities large and small around the country,” said John B. Townsend II of AAA.

Townsend calculated that the District takes in an average of $370,000 in parking fines every working day of the year.

“If the city were to stack the amount of parking fines collected in single dollar bills, it would nearly reach to the average altitude that a commercial airliner flies above the surface of the Earth,” Townsend said.

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