Downtown Fresno is seeing a growing number of violations by people illegally using licenses and placards meant to give special disabled parking access.
California issued over 700 such violations just last year. The DMV and city parking managers said it’s a daily violation in Fresno especially Downtown.
Rachel Rodriguez’s brother-in-law is sight impaired and lawfully uses a disabled placard. She said they almost never find open spots because people misuse use the signs.
“We have a hard time finding parking because people park there and don’t need the plaque. They abuse it. It’s not right,” she said.
The City of Fresno and California DMV host monthly enforcement operations issuing citations.
“Every time we conduct, unfortunately we find 15-20% violation rate,” said Thomas Wilson, Deputy Chief State of California DMV Investigations
The penalty is a misdemeanor, and a costly one.
“They can face a trip to court with a citation $250-$1,000 fine and violation on driving record,” said Wilson.
City of Fresno Parking Manager Del Estabrooke says people get creative when trying to avoid the law.
“We see everything from placards for sale, all the way to people using a family members placard, or a deceased family members,” he said.
Estabrooke stressed that it’s more than unlawful, it’s hurting the handicapped.
“When you’re violating this law you are taking a parking stall from someone who can really use it,” he said.
If you see anyone who seems to be using handicap parking who shouldn’t be, you can report it on the FRESGO application.