James Owens lives on the 1800 block of E. Tioga St., and he has a residential-parking permit that allows him to park for as long as he wants in Permit District #19. So imagine his puzzlement when last Wednesday, July 27, he found a ticket from the Philadelphia Parking Authority placed on the windshield of his Chevy truck, fining him $26 for being parked beyond the 2-hour time limit imposed on non-permitted vehicles.
The crazy thing?
The ticket was placed right on top of the spot where his #19 permit is adhered to his windshield.
Owens admits that the permits are supposed to be placed on a vehicle's back window. But his window is broken - covered with a board - so his permit is on the front windshield for now, on the passenger side.
"The only thing I can think was, maybe the officer assumed I didn't have a parking permit, because he didn't see it on my back window" - because the back window is missing, he says. "But didn't he see it on the front? He put the ticket right on top of it! At that point, why wouldn't he call his supervisor and say, 'Hey, I made a mistake,' and get it wiped out? Why is it on me to fight his mistake?"
Owens said he didn't bother calling the PPA, since he didn't think he'd get anywhere over the phone. So he took time off from his job as a self-employed contractor and visted the PPA's offices at 31st and Market. After showing a clerk and two different supervisors a photo of the ticket placement, he says he was told the ticket would be dismissed because "they couldn't believe it, either."
But he got no paperwork to prove the ticket was a goner.
"I hope they keep their word," he said.