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Islip sees spike in parking ticket collections

Town of Islip code enforcement officers handed out about 15,000 parking tickets in 2013, raising $1.37 million, officials said.

Nearly 37 percent more tickets were written compared with 2012, when 11,149 were issued amounting to $1.1 million, according to Islip Town Councilman Anthony Senft.

"We're more vigilant in our enforcement efforts in illegal parking, and . . . it serves as a revenue stream," Senft said. "More importantly, it ensures our roadways are safe and improves the standard of living with our neighbors."

Most of the 15,225 tickets were for illegal parking in handicapped spaces, a fine of $107 apiece, Senft said. Motorists parking at fire hydrants and in fire zones near schools were also among the highest number of offenses.

The violations spike in cycles, with a hefty amount coming during summer months when there are restrictions on street parking near the Fire Island ferry terminals, Senft said.

Stepped-up code enforcement has been a part of the effort to defeat the town's $11.3 million deficit, which is down from $26 million at the beginning of 2012.

Parking violation fees range from $50 for parking illegally during a snow emergency to $250 for leaving a commercial vehicle on any town street overnight.

Twelve repeat offenders -- who owed between $900 and $2,500 in fines -- had their cars booted in 2013, according to Inez Birbiglia, spokeswoman for Town Supervisor Tom Croci.

"It can get into the thousands of dollars," Birbiglia said of the fines. "It sends a strong message."

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