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Saturday, December 2, 2023

Staff Editorial

Parking enforcement should be consistent

The limited activity on campus during the summer must be making the folks at the Department of Parking and Transportation Services bored. Especially those who are tasked with passing out parking tickets.

Since the campus is not as populated as it is during the fall or spring, some of the parking staff have taken it upon themselves to dish out nuisance tickets for harmless violations. We are all about the enforcement of rules, but the parking department has failed to develop consistent enforcement.

If you have a pass in one lot, then you are prohibited from parking in another until after 5 p.m. — when cars and people are sparse. However, it is easy to park in your original spot, and later move your car to better suit you. A student may park in their designated lot, but walks to and from class are lengthy. Taking the shortcut is easy because it often goes unnoticed even though it is ticket-worthy.

The weather is obviously warm in Houston, so this would be an ideal time to move your vehicle — especially to a nearly empty parking lot. But if a parking employee deems it necessary, you will find a ticket tucked under your windshield wipers. Try your luck again the next day, there is a good chance it would go undetected.

People are wired to make life a tad easier if it’s possible. If a student takes the small risk and doesn’t get caught they’ll probably do it again. If a car displays a tag from another lot but is parked incorrectly in a lot, is it really worth the trouble of giving a ticket? If it is, then why isn’t it being enforced every day?

We think there are other ways UHDPS could be spending its time. Making plans for more accessible parking for students and visitors would be a start.

UHDPS needs to be thorough with its policies, instead of haphazard. It needs to enforce a zero tolerance policy and tow cars instead of randomly writing tickets — even if the car is innocently sitting there with countless open spots.

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