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Parking tickets getting costlier

Increase is implemented to avoid losing city revenue after rise in processing fee.

February 18, 2011|By Gretchen Meier, gretchen.meier@latimes.com

Most parking tickets will cost drivers an extra $3 under a revenue-bumping plan approved by the City Council this week.

The increase will apply to all parking violations, save those involving street sweeping, and will be fully implemented in the coming weeks.

The increase was spurred by a $3 processing fee that Los Angeles County started charging Burbank and other law enforcement agencies for parking violations. Without the tandem increase, Burbank would lose $172,000 in annual revenue, city officials reported.

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Even so, the council wasn’t willing to tack on to the cost of street-sweeping violations.

“I know the revenue piece was pretty significant,” Councilman Dave Golonski said of the increased fee for parking citations during allotted street-sweeping times. “But can we at least not impose this additional three dollars — it’s kind of adding insult to injury if you ask me.”

Despite the $3 increase, Financial Services Director Cindy Giraldo recommended amending the city’s budget to reflect a $290,870 decrease in revenue from parking and other traffic fines, a trend being researched by Burbank Police Department.

Weakened revenue streams from Burbank Water and Power due to the mild summer and conservation efforts forced a decrease of $931,213 in projected funds for the current fiscal year and another $597,000 reduction in telecommunication revenues, according to a city report.

Property tax revenue predictions remained unchanged, while services charged for city services defied expectations and registered a $648,102 increase for the current budget forecast.

Burbank has also seen a nearly a $1.5-million increase in sales tax revenue from the year prior during the first six months of the current fiscal year, city officials reported, bumping the figure up to $7.8 million.

The 7% increase exceeded the 1.1% bump in the original forecast, Giraldo said.

An $8.4-million budget gap is forecasted for the upcoming fiscal year.

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