By Henry Rosoff
10:54 p.m. PDT, Wed June 24, 2015
Seattle police have a warning for drivers with outstanding parking tickets: pay up, or be brought down by the dreaded boot.
Parking officers began literally putting that warning on cars citywide Wednesday. Seattle is owed more than $50 million in unpaid parking tickets.
Seattle police said there are 15,000 people with three unpaid parking tickets, accounting for about $4.8 million in fines. Those scofflaws will get the green warning tag put on their cars telling them a boot could come with one more ticket.
Currently, 2,000 people with four or more unpaid parking tickets account for more than $1.9 million in owed. They will get the 30-day notice sticker telling them to pay up or be booted.
“It’s not necessarily about collecting revenue,” said a police spokesman. “It’s about making sure people don’t get the boot on there.”
The new paper notices will be given out by parking police driving around with license plate readers that can tell who has outstanding tickets. The warning system will make it easier to boot people. Previously, police would have to make sure they had a good address to send warnings home.
Getting booted costs an extra $145. However, the boots can be deactivated remotely, so at least there is no waiting for someone to show up. People do have to bring the boots to drop-off locations after they release.