Reading Parking Authority gives UPS truck the boot
Truck had more than $1,000 worth of parking tickets, RPA director says
The Reading Parking Authority is delivering on its promise to crack down on parking violators.
The authority placed an immobilizing device, commonly known as a boot, on a UPS truck that was parked in the 800 block of Penn Street in center city late Thursday morning.
"I think that is absolutely crazy," said Brigette Isom, of Reading. "These guys serve our community. I cannot believe they would ticket a UPS truck. I mean, why? That does not make any sense."
But the parking authority's executive director, Patrick Mulligan, said it makes perfect sense. The UPS driver, he said, had 12 outstanding tickets for double parking and parking in handicapped zones, totaling more than $1,000.
"We treat everyone in the city of Reading equally and fairly," Mulligan said. "No one is absolved from booting."
A parking authority employee returned to the truck about two hours later and removed the boot once the issue with UPS was resolved, Mulligan said.
A UPS spokesperson told 69 News that the company accepted fault for the tickets going unpaid, blaming the issue on a clerical error involving its computer software.
The parking authority announced last month that its employees would more strictly enforce the city's parking ordinance by cracking down on violators, targeting the core business district from 2nd Street up to 7th and the area between Franklin and Washington.
Since the start, Mulligan said he's noticed traffic is flowing smoothly throughout downtown Reading.
"I think we are utilizing our loading zones more efficiently. We have actually freed up more parking because we now have the MobileNOW! app," said Mulligan, noting that the free app allows motorists to pay for their parking with a credit card rather than feeding coins into a meter.
Still, some said they will never understand why service drivers are included in the crackdown.
"I mean some people may say, 'Hey, it is blocking traffic,' or whatever, but you know what, we get over that and we go around them because they are doing their job," said Isom.
Mulligan reiterated Thursday that no one is exempt from being ticketed.
"We enforce everything evenly across the board," Mulligan said. "We are not trying to prevent commerce from happening. Whether it's a commercial vehicle or private citizen, everyone needs to be responsible."
Parking violations range from $20 to $135, according to the RPA's website. They increase to between $35 and $200 if not paid within 10 days.
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