Town officials this month upheld a $150 ticket issued to a Wilton woman who had parked in a space on Elm Street designated for disabled people.
Marie Donahue during her appeal hearing told members of the Parking Commission that a FedEx truck was parked next to the space, located in front of the Playhouse and designated only by a sign and not by blue paint in the street itself, when she pulled up on the morning of Dec. 28. “I passed the truck and the truck was apparently obstructing the handicapped sign,” she said during the Jan. 10 hearing, held at Town Hall. “So yes, I was parked there but I did not see the sign.
Town officials this month upheld a $75 ticket for a local man who had parked in front of a fire hydrant on Main Street. During an appeal hearing at Town Hall, Bryan Bourdier told members of the Parking Commission that it was “a little unfair” that he got the ticket, in part because his girlfriend was in the car while he ran in to Organika Kitchen to pickup a to-go order. “Let’s say if something was to break down and they actually need the hydrant, someone from the car probably could have moved the car,” Bourdier told the Commission at its Jan. 10 meeting. When Commissioner Peter Ogilvie asked why Bourdier’s girlfriend didn’t pick up the food, he responded, “She could have but she was on the phone.”
Ogilvie, Chairman Keith Richey, Secretary Pam Crum and Commissioners Chris Hering and Stuart Stringfellow voted 5-0 to uphold the fine.
A divided Parking Commission last week upheld a $25 ticket for a motorist who said he didn’t pay for a space at Morse Court because he believed Dec. 5 was a national holiday. Steven Colfin told Commissioners during their regular meeting Thursday that it was a “national day of mourning.”
“There is a sign there saying” no one has to pay for parking on holidays, Colfin told the Commission during his appeal hearing, held at Town Hall. “It was the Wednesday of the national day of morning for president George H.W. Bush, the federal government was closed, markets were closed, I took it as a holiday.”
Chairman Keith Richey said, “It’s the holiday defense.”
He added, “Actually, I think that’s a pretty good defense, as a mater of fact.”
A parking enforcement officer issued the ticket at 12:11 p.m. that day.
Commissioner Pam Crum asked Colfin whether he parked and then went to get lunch, and he said yes.
During deliberations, Crum said, “I’m sorry, it is not a holiday.”
Richey responded, “Actually it was a holiday.”
Asked to clarify, Parking Manager Stacy Miltenberg, a guest at the meeting, said New Canaan only waives parking fees on “federal holidays.”
“People have asked me whether there’s other holidays throughout the year and people will call up, ‘It’s such-and-such, is it a holiday?’ ” Miltenberg said. Richey and Commissioner Stuart Stringfellow voted to void the ticket, while Crum and Commissioner Chris Hering voted to uphold it, leaving the decisive vote to Commissioner Peter Ogilvie.
Parking officials this month upheld a $30 parking ticket for a Darien woman who had pulled into a loading zone on a Saturday afternoon. Maria Olivo told members of the Parking Commission that she came to New Canaan to return an item to J. Crew and didn’t realize that the loading zone applied to weekends. “It wasn’t like there weren’t other spots,” Olivo said during the Commission’s regular meeting, held Nov. 1 at Town Hall. “There were other spots.
Despite her protests, officials this month upheld a $30 ticket for a woman who had parked on the southeast corner of Elm Street and South Avenue, squeezing in between a bike rack and the pedestrian crosswalk. Lauren Sandstrom said she didn’t deserve the ticket for a No Parking Zone violation, issued at about 1 p.m. on a Friday in October. Though lines had been drawn on the asphalt there, sketching out a no parking area, they had not yet been repainted, Sandstrom told members of the Parking Commission at their regular meeting. Also, a sign there says two-hour parking from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., with arrows pointing in both directions. “So I parked my car and actually when I came out, the lady in the store said, ‘Oh yeah, the man [parking enforcement officer] on the bike was just here and passed out tickets,’ and he actually had ticketed every car in a line, including a car that parked next to me on the other side [of the bike rack],” Sandstrom said during her appeal hearing, held at Town Hall.
Chairman Keith Richey asked whether Sandstrom had parked in the “spot” for less than two hours.