Pixel Tracker

Tuesday, December 18 , 2018, 4:24 pm | Partly Cloudy 63º

Noozhawk Asks: Information + Inspiration for Santa Barbara County
A reader engagement partnership with Community West Bank

Noozhawk Asks: How Much Money is Collected from Street Sweeping Parking Citations in Santa Barbara?

A reader wants to know how much the city gets from the thousands of parking citations issued each year

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

Question: How much money is collected with street sweeping parking citations and exactly how is the money used? Who determines the spending?

— Chrystal Carlson

Street sweeping parking violations generate hundreds of thousands of dollars in revenue for the city of Santa Barbara, and the money is put back into the budget for cleaning commercial and residential routes.

According to the city's latest two-year financial plan, street sweeping parking violations generated $664,538 for the 2016 fiscal year. The projected revenue from citations in the 2017-18 year is $660,000.

The regular price of a street sweeping parking fine is $48.

On average, the city sweeps around 18,000 curb miles, on both residential and commercial routes, each year.

Specialized trucks sweep up trash, leaves and other debris that are stuck in the gutters along the street, while parking enforcement officers write citations for vehicles left parked along the curb during sweeping hours. 

The Parking Enforcement Unit issued more than 55,000 citations in 2016 and about 29,000 of them were for street sweeping, according to the latest city budget documents.

That would generate about $1.3 million, assuming a ticket price of $48, but the street sweeping program recorded $664,538 as its portion of the revenues last year. 

The citation revenues are put back into the street sweeping program, which costs almost $1 million a year to operate.

In 2016, the city spent a combined total of $911,824 from the city budget to pay for street sweeping and the program is budgeted at a cost of $976,073 for the current year. 

The program’s revenue comes out of both citation money and funds that are transferred in from other parts of the city government, such as the city's Creeks Division.

Street sweeping isn’t a money-making tool but an expense, said Michele DeCant, Business Manager for the City of Santa Barbara Public Works department.

“We do not make enough money just on parking violations to pay the cost of this residential program,” DeCant said.

The nearly $1 million spent each year includes paying for the supplies, equipment and employee salaries involved in street sweeping. 

A large chunk of the parking citation revenues is transferred to the Santa Barbara Police Department to support the parking enforcement officers who work in the street sweeping program, according to the city's budget. 

Budgetary decisions like this one are decided by department heads, in this case the Public Works Department, and ultimately the City Council, which must approve a budget every year. 

Noozhawk intern Shomik Mukherjee can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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 using a credit card, Apple Pay or Google Pay, 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
Select your monthly membership
Or choose an annual membership

Payment Information

Membership Subscription

You are enrolling in . Thank you for joining the Hawks Club.

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.
You may cancel your membership at any time by sending an email to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

  • 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.

Noozhawk Asks Sponsors

Noozhawk wishes to thank our Hawks Club members for their generosity and willingness to make Noozhawk Asks a reality.

It’s not too late to get your name on this list. If you would like to make a contribution, please contact publisher Bill Macfadyen at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or 805.456.7195. Contributions to Noozhawk are not tax-deductible.

Thank you.

Suzie & Fred Allen

Katy Bazylewicz

Casey Bemis

Jean Blois

Ri-Pen Chou

Jeff DeVine

Brian Fahnestock

Judy Frost

Michael Gartzke

Marilyn Gilbert

Wesley Ginther

Stephanie Gombrelli

Patricia Griffin

Hib Halverson

Ed Heron

Bonnie and Richard Jensen

Danny Langhorne

Sofie Langhorne

Colin Macfadyen

Kirsten Macfadyen

Alixe Mattingly

Sheila & Frank McGinity

Kathleen Meehan

Kristen Miller

Bree Morris

Paula Patrick

Ed Seaman

Elizabeth Tilton

Kyra Turner

Scott Van Horn

Noozhawk’s note: Several dozen readers requested anonymity with their contributions.