An ordinance adding a monetary civil penalty for anyone caught misusing a disabled parking placard was approved Tuesday by the Los Angeles City Council.
The City Council adopted a resolution in 2013 prohibiting the use of a disabled parking placard or special license plate that — according to DMV records — had been lost, stolen, surrendered, canceled, revoked or expired, or was issued to a person who has been deceased for more than 60 days. The resolution also prohibited the use of a disabled placard or special license plate when not transporting the individual to whom the placard or license plate was issued.
However, the resolution did not provide for a monetary penalty for violating the prohibitions. The new ordinance will impose a penalty of $1,100 on an individual who misuses a disabled parking placard or special license plate. State law also imposes an additional 10 percent of the penalty, which is deposited with the city.
Misusing a disabled placard is “a particularly heinous thing to do, and so many people do it nowadays,” Councilman Bob Blumenfield said. “They get lulled into a false sense that somehow it’s OK. Well it’s not OK. When you abuse a disabled placard you are taking it away from a person who really needs it, or you are abusing that privilege and diluting it and making it difficult for everyone else to get around Los Angeles.”
The ordinance was approved on a 13-0 vote and needs to be signed by Mayor Eric Garcetti to become official.
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