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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 11, 2017
DMV Cracks Down on Disabled Parking Placard Abuse in Santa Maria
Enforcement operation results in eight citations
Santa Maria – Investigators with the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) approached 55 drivers and issued eight misdemeanor citations for illegally parking vehicles in marked handicap spots during an enforcement operation today in Santa Maria. It was carried out in the parking lot of the Walmart shopping center at 2020 South Bradley Road.
Offenders must appear in court to face possible fines that range from $250 to $1,000. While the misdemeanor offense will appear on an offender’s driver record, no points are assessed because it is not a moving violation.
The DMV proactively carries out these types of enforcement operations every month and in every district throughout the year in an effort to reduce the impact DPPP fraud has on the mobility of those with disabilities. The DMV also uses these enforcement efforts as a way to raise general awareness and educate Californians about the need for compliance and the consequences that come with violating the law.
From April 1 to June 30, 2017, DMV investigators issued 747 misdemeanor citations to people fraudulently using Disabled Person Parking Placards during 49 enforcement operations held throughout the state.
The level of reported or observed misuse of DPPP varies from area to area. Most violations involve people using disabled parking placards issued to family or friends to avoid paying parking fees, as well as obtaining convenient and/or unrestricted parking. California Vehicle Code Section 4461(b) (c) prohibits anyone from lending their placard, knowingly permitting the use of their placard or allowing anyone else to use it while they are not present. In addition, a person shall not display a disabled person placard that was not issued to him or her or that has been canceled or revoked.
“It is important to point out that some qualifying disabilities are not visually apparent and allegations of misuse may be unfounded,” explained DMV Investigations Chief Frank Alvarez. “The majority of Californians who apply for a DPPP have legitimate reasons for doing so.”
Anyone who thinks someone has been issued a Disabled Person Parking Placard in error or suspects placard misuse is urged to contact their local DMV Investigations office and submit a written complaint by filling out a Record of Complaint Form 172A or email firstname.lastname@example.org. The complaint can be anonymous.
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