City tries to regain $12 million debt in parking tickets

Current downtown parking meters. (FOX19)
Current downtown parking meters. (FOX19)

CINCINNATI (FOX19) - Cincinnati is currently owed millions of dollars in unpaid parking tickets and leaders are rolling out a new plan that could reduce some of the debt.

Cincinnati is set to sign an agreement with Xerox Corporation to handle some of the city's parking operations. The contract will cost $592,000 for the corporation to help with city parking data.

Xerox Corporation will measure analytics to more efficiently enforce meters and balance meter prices based on location, Bill Moller, Cincinnati Assistant City Manage, explained Tuesday at a city council committee meeting.

Cincinnati is currently owed nearly $12 million from unpaid parking tickets dating back to 2005. Leaders are hoping the contract with Xerox, in addition to new 'smart' meters, will help reign in some of those funds.

The new meters are expected to bring the city $1.1 million in revenue per year, with a $500,000 profit, according to Moller.

The city recently hired more parking officers, and in the past two months reports seeing a big difference.

"The number of tickets written is up by 21 percent. This is just getting back to the normal complement of parking enforcement officers. So that's about 2,500 additional tickets compared to the same couple of months last year," said Moller.

The 'smart' meters will be solar powered, with battery back-up with an eventual pay-by-phone option. City Council allocated $2 million for the meters.

In addition to the 1,500 new single smart meters, 40 multi-space meters and 2,500 replacement meters will be purchased.

Once the contract is signed, city officials say the new meters will be installed within four to six weeks.

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