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Youngstown City Council to form Parking Violations Bureau

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YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio - If you've been ignoring your parking tickets from the city over the years, it's now time to pay up.

Whether you are parked in an undesignated spot or at an expired meter, chances are you will find a parking ticket on your windshield.

Members of Youngstown City Council hope that a new ordinance will force more parking violators to immediately pay off their tickets as they pass a measure that will create a Parking Violations Bureau at the clerk of courts office.

Under Ohio Revised Code, having that title gives the clerk's office more "teeth" in collecting fines and those who rack over $500 in them are going to feel the bite.

"We could initiate a civil process and that gives us the ability to garnish wages and attach bank accounts," said Sarah Brown-Clark, Youngstown Clerk of Courts.

The new bureau can also get a warrant block, in which you're unable to renew your license tags. It can tow away the offender's car or lock it down with a boot.

"People don't realize that for whatever reason a parking violation is a serious violation," she said.

The good news is, you will have 30 days to pay the $10 fine on your parking ticket. However, after that, it will raise to $30.

The new Parking Violations Bureau will offer an amnesty week from April 29 through May 4, for people to pay off their tickets before the changes go into effect.

That gives YSU students who have accumulated fines to pay them off before summer break.

"We want cash, money order. We will have payment options available online," Brown-Clark said.  

Many violators have not paid their tickets for at least ten years. The worst offender has accumulated $6,820 in fines.

"Anyone who has not paid in full by June 1 will automatically go to collections and you know that effects their credit standing," she said.

License plate numbers of violators who owe $500 or more will be printed in the newspaper.

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