REVERE — The city is accepting toys for tickets.
A new program launched this week by Mayor Brian Arrigo allows parking scofflaws the chance to make things right and do a good deed at the same time.
“This is a great opportunity for people to clear up pending, overdue fines and bring happiness to a child who might otherwise have a dismal holiday, said Arrigo. “It’s a way for the city to remind those children that we care about them.”
Amnesty programs have been successful in clearing up long-standing debts owed to communities across the country, said Arrigo.
The city issued more than 28,500 tickets this year, according to a spokesperson from Arrigo’s office. Almost 2,800 were issued in November, and 240 have been issued so far in December.
People who owe fines and fees for past unpaid parking violations have until Dec. 21 to donate an unused toy, similar in value to the ticket cost, to the city’s Parking Department. The toys will be given to needy children enrolled in the Revere Public School system, according to Arrigo.
Charges of $30 per individual ticket will be waived for each toy donated, up to five tickets.
“Based on the information we could gather, the average amount owed on unpaid parking tickets was approximately $30, so the $30 figure seemed a logical point to set the waiver amount,” said Arrigo.
The waiver will reduce the amount owed on a single unpaid ticket by $30. For example, a $15 ticket that has accrued $15 in fines will be cleared in exchange for a suitable toy. A single violation that generated a $25 fine that accrued an additional $25 in late fees for a total of $50, could be reduced to $20 with a toy donation.
“We estimate that in many cases, a single $30 waiver will clear the violation altogether,” said Arrigo. “But this is a chance for someone who has accrued a substantial number of unpaid parking violations to get a break of as much as $150 waived from the total amount owed, and at the same time contribute to (a) child’s enjoyment of the holidays.”
The toys should be brought to the Parking Department at 300 Broadway, Post Office Building, Suite 2.
The amnesty program was approved by City Council and became effective immediately. It will continue through Dec. 21.