SAN DIEGO (CNS) - San Diego city officials have not bothered to refer about $2.9 million worth of unpaid parking tickets to the collections department since 2007, an audit showed Wednesday.
The 34,344 unpaid tickets account for 19 percent of those that were eligible for collections, according to City Auditor Eduardo Luna, whose report was released late Tuesday.
Most of the problems stem from errors in manual entries into old-fashioned ticket books, although they account for only 9 percent of the total, according to the report. Most citations are now entered electronically on a handheld device.
According to the audit, the city issued more than 450,000 parking citations in the past fiscal year, bringing in $22.5 million.
The audit identified three other problems.
Training and procedures differed among departments that issue parking tickets, and also among 12 agencies that work with the city on citations, such as the Port of San Diego, the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority and Metropolitan Transit System.
Second, the audit determined that 10 of those other agencies are not receiving monthly distributions of citation income like they are supposed to -- the payments are being made quarterly.
And the program for replacing old meters is lacking, the audit found.
Among the recommendations were to send all eligible tickets to collections, conduct regular data system audits to ensure those tickets are going to collections, and develop a more adequate meter replacement program.
The city has 5,276 parking meters, mostly downtown.
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