The City of Toronto has withdrawn approximately 880,000 disputed parking tickets because it would cost too much time and money to put them through the court system.
The statement says the tickets “represent less than three percent of all tickets issued between 2002-2014, and includes tickets for which a trial request had been submitted or a retrial ordered but no trial was yet scheduled.”
It goes on to say the withdraw was an administrative measure that helps avoid pursuing tickets that have exceeded a reasonable amount of time, historically 12 to 16 months for parking tickets, and have “no reasonable prospect of conviction.”
The city is also emphasizing that while the withdrawal represents an estimated $20 million in potential fine revenue for Toronto, the cost for the tickets to go to court would have exceeded $23 million.
Speaking to the Toronto Sun, Mayor John Tory said the situation had him “ticked off,” saying “it clearly represents a failure of management and I’m not sure exactly where the failure is. I think it deserves examination by somebody like the auditor.”
In the meantime, the city is looking into alternative measures of processing parking ticket disputes, including the use of an administrative monetary penalty system that would move parking bylaw disputes out of the provincial courts and move them to an administrative review process.
A report outlining new options is expected to be presented to council later this year.