What does the city do with parking ticket funds?: A ticket to park

BY AMINA FARHA

Published October 16, 2007

It's something that almost every car owner in Ann Arbor has complained about - parking.

Jessica Boullion
Between parking structures fees and revenue generated through parking tickets and meters, the City of Ann Arbor reeled in better than $11 million last year. (ROB MIGRIN/Daily)

But how much does Ann Arbor really make off of parking fees and fines, and what do they do with the money?

The answer depends on whether you're parked within the University's jurisdiction or not.

If you're parked somewhere that belongs to the City of Ann Arbor, your money goes to the Downtown Development Authority, which DDA financial manager Joe Morehouse said collects about $2.4 million from its 1,700 meters and another $9.2 million from surface lots and parking garages.

Of this, $2.7 million goes back into rent that the DDA pays to the city. The DDA also pays about $8 million to maintain parking areas.

Morehouse said the DDA uses remaining revenue to fund programs such as go!pass, a program that allows employees who work within the DDA boundaries to use the bus for free.

But money from parking tickets goes elsewhere. Parking referee John Getz said the city of Ann Arbor issued 123,991 parking tickets last year, collecting $2,314,796. Another $21,000 worth of tickets went unpaid.

Revenue collected from tickets funds the city's general budget. Tom Crawford, chief financial officer and financial services administrator for the city of Ann Arbor, said these proceeds account for less than three percent of the city's $82 million general fund.

On the other hand, revenue from University-owned parking comes mostly from permit sales. Dave Miller, executive director for University parking and transportation services, said permit sales account for about 70 percent of the University's $16 million parking budget. Another $1.5 million comes from visitor parking.

Miller said the $500,000 made from parking tickets issued on University property goes into a fund that pays for safety projects around campus like printing costs for the campus safety handbook, projects to increase lighting throughout campus and upgrading the card access system that allows entrance into University buildings.

Amina Farha

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