Parking Officials Void Ticket for Town Woman Who Overstayed at Morse Court

A split vote among members of the Parking Commission at a special meeting Tuesday night voided a $25 ticket issued to a New Canaan woman for overtime parking at Morse Court. Sarah Spadaccini told the Commission that on July 27, after she clocked out of her shift at Kiwanis Park, she parked her at Morse Court in a 15-minute zone so that she could pick up her takeout order from Spiga restaurant. She said that her order had already been prepared when she arrived at the restaurant, so all she had to do was pay and then leave. 

“As I was walking out to my car—because I was in the spot closest to Main Street—I could see the man ticketing my car,” she said. “It couldn’t have been more than 15 minutes. I was in and then I was out.

‘Ludicrous’: Parking Officials Uphold $75 Ticket for Fairfield Woman Parked in a Crosswalk 

The Parking Commission on Tuesday night voted unanimously to uphold a $75 ticket issued to a Fairfield woman who was parked in a crosswalk on Elm Street. 

Patricia Hessel told members of the Commission at a special meeting that on July 6, she parked in downtown New Canaan just before noon to go shopping for her business and when she returned to her vehicle 10 minutes later, she found a ticket on her car. 

“Apparently, I parked in a crosswalk and I did not realize I did,” she told the Commission at its meeting, held in Town Hall. “I’m not from this town. Our town has big white lines [marking the crosswalk]. I did hesitate a bit, but then I got out of the car, I saw the sign and said to myself, ‘I guess it must be OK because [the arrow on the sign] is pointing both ways… But sure enough, I got a ticket.”

Hessel said that she didn’t take a photo of where her car was parked at the time the ticket was issued but went back at a later date and took a photo “to prove my case.” She presented the photo to the Commission as evidence. 

“The big white lines and red bricks [at the crosswalk] didn’t trigger any thoughts?” Commissioner Peter Ogilvie asked. 

Hessel replied “no” and reiterated that she was looking for large, white lines similar to what she’s used to seeing at crosswalks in Fairfield. 

“The [arrow on the] sign looked like it was pointing both ways, so I’m fighting it,” she said. “Believe me, I will never park there again.

‘Ignorance Is an Excuse Under the Law’: Divided Parking Commission Voids New Canaan Woman’s Loading Zone Ticket

The Parking Commission at its most recent meeting voted 3-2 to void a ticket issued to a New Canaan woman who had parked in a loading zone on Main Street. Elizabeth Zea told the commissioners that when she parked in front of the former Thali building around 9 a.m. on a Saturday in June to get her hair colored, she didn’t see a sign designating the area as a loading zone from 7 to 11 a.m. 

“I was gone for about 90 minutes and when I came back I got a ticket and thought, ‘What did I do?’ ” Zea told the Police Commission at its regular meeting, held July 12 at Town Hall. 

The only signs Zea saw were for two-hour parking from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., she said, and what she eventually discovered to be the loading zone sign was hidden behind a hanging basket. “Those darn hanging baskets,” Chairman Keith Richey said. Zea said that she liked flowers but “I really didn’t see the ‘No Parking’ ” designation. Since that specific loading zone has come up a few times at recent meetings of the Commission, the panel spent some time reviewing the history of its designation.

Parking Commission Upholds Two Tickets Issued to Downtown Employee

Parking officials last month upheld two tickets issued to an employee of a business downtown who had overstayed the time limit for on-street parking there. Maria Ju told members of the Parking Commission during her appeal hearing that she received two tickets about one week apart after overstaying in her space by about 10 minutes. “I was working at the ophthalmology office and I got stuck,” she said at the hearing, held July 12 at Town Hall. “We were busy in the office … I was with a patient and I could not get out, so I missed it by 10 minutes.”

Commissioner Peter Ogilvie noted that one of the office’s patients had also overstayed in his parking spot and was ticketed, and came before the panel seeking to have the ticket voided recently. Chairman Keith Richey told Ju that the Commission is “pretty much against employees of the shops along Main and Elm parking in the street.”

“We want them to park with a very cheap permit in the Center Lot, or parking in Morse Court and paying by the hour,” Richey said.

Due to Problem Out Front of Starbucks, New ‘Parking on Sidewalk’ Violation, $50 Fine Proposed

Saying the problem is most prevalent in front of Starbucks, town officials are seeking a new violation and $50 fine for those who park on a sidewalk in New Canaan. As it is, parking enforcement officers may issue a $30 fine under the category “Other” when motorists pull onto the Park Street sidewalk in front of Starbucks, according to Parking Manager Stacy Miltenberg. But a dedicated violation and fine more along the lines of what motorists face when they park in a crosswalk ($75) would be preferable, Miltenberg told members of the Parking Commission at their meeting Thursday. “You know at Starbucks where they have the outside tables?” Miltenberg said at the meeting, held at Town Hall. “OK, you know the sidewalk in front of them?