Friday, August 17 , 2018, 4:48 pm | A Few Clouds 76º


Letter to the Editor: SBPD’s Memorial Day Ticketing Spree

It’s Monday in downtown Santa Barbara, but it’s not a normal Monday filled with the regular hustle and bustle of delivery trucks, business people, mail deliverers and city workers. It’s Memorial Day.

You could say the streets are quiet, save for the visitors and locals alike who fill restaurants and shops. Banks, offices and government buildings are closed. Nobody’s working. Even the police department is closed. But parking enforcement is still working.

This Memorial Day, you can’t look down a city street without finding sprouts of bright green tickets poking out from the windshields of vehicles guilty of “overtime parking.” It’s surprising to see so many tickets when there is such little motor activity on the streets and there is plenty of parking everywhere. Yet, for some reason the Santa Barbara Police Department has decided to issue the unsuspecting visitors and residents who are out actually spending money in our community silly, unnecessary and obtuse fines of $50 each.

Since the parking offenders never saw it coming, maybe the SBPD should have included a card that reads “Thanks for visiting Santa Barbara. Come back soon” to soften the blow. But in all seriousness, this is a tiny tragedy that represents the disconnect between the city government’s need to “administer” and truly dutiful service of facilitating the prosperity of the city’s inhabitants.

Is this what happens when a city is in debt? When it comes time to choose the distribution of city personnel, do “easy fines win every time”?

While there is nobody scrubbing the freshly spray-painted weekend work of our community dregs and dissidents stating ‘F*** the Police,” there are parking cops serving upright and engaged community members with a surplus of pointless parking tickets. At best this breeds discontent toward our city’s proudest departments and costs residents considerable cash. Heck, maybe the ugly and explicit graffiti on Figueroa Street was painted by a guy in a BMW who got a pointless parking ticket.

Happy Memorial Day.

Christian Maurer
Santa Barbara

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made through Stripe below, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments and a mailing address for checks.

Thank you for your vital support.

Become a Noozhawk Supporter

First name
Last name
Enter your email
Select your membership level

Payment Information

You are purchasing:

Payment Method

Pay by Credit Card:

Mastercard, Visa, American Express, Discover
One click only, please!

Pay with Apple Pay or Google Pay:

Noozhawk partners with Stripe to provide secure invoicing and payments processing.

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click Here to Get Started >

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.

Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.

Sign Up Now >