San Diego cracks down on handicap parking placard abusers - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

San Diego cracks down on handicap parking placard abusers

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SAN DIEGO (CNS) - The City Council Tuesday approved a series of actions that will broaden enforcement actions against people who misuse disabled parking placards in San Diego.

According to a city staff report, it's estimated that 60 percent of the handicapped placards -- which allow parking in preferred spaces -- are abused, and the "flagrant" and "willful" misuse is increasing substantially.

"I think everyone has seen what they believe to be, or looks like, people who are perfectly able-bodied taking spaces and hopping out of a car," Councilwoman Lorie Zapf said.

Currently, only police officers in San Diego are allowed to enforce the use of the placards. The new ordinance will allow parking enforcement officers to write tickets.

The council also established a $740 fine for an offense, and state law requires an additional 10 percent penalty.

The staff report said police officers average issuing 400 citations for placard abuse each year.

In other action, the council approved a three-year deal with Car2Go to establish an electric vehicle rental program in San Diego. The city and Car2Go had been working on a pilot program since 2011, in which vehicles are rented by the minute and driven in a defined area.

According to city staff, more than 7,000 trips are made per week in Car2Go's 400-vehicle local fleet.

The agreement includes an option to renew for two additional years.

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