SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - A new Santa Barbara City Council ordinance will allow some city employees and volunteers to hand out parking tickets and warnings to illegally parked cars on Santa Barbara streets.
The ordinance goes into effect Tuesday.
Those given the ability to issue parking tickets must first be designated by the Santa Barbara Chief of Police.
The Santa Barbara Police Department says the city employees designated would likely come from areas such as Community Development or Parking, while the volunteers will come from the department’s “Volunteering in Policing” group. The department also says those designated to be able to issue tickets will likely also have to take a class to learn about appropriate situations to issue tickets.
Santa Barbara police also said the extra enforcement will have a “heavy emphasis” downtown along the State Street corridor and on other major streets.
“I don’t think you’re gonna have a volunteer that’s making sure you parked 18 inches or less from your curb in front of your home,” said Anthony Wagner, Public Engagement Officer for the Santa Barbara Police Department. “This is most likely public and prominent spaces.”
Wagner said the extra enforcement will allow officers to focus elsewhere.
“Many hands make light work,” Wagner said. “The whole goal is to free up police officers to not be invested in parking, to where they can go do community policing, go walk the State Street corridor, go do proactive community policing.”
Wagner also said that the move will help free up parking spaces downtown and move along the ebb and flow of cars, which can in turn help business in the area.
“Those 30, 60, 90-minute, 75-minute parking spaces are meant for someone to utilize that space to go conduct business,” Wagner said. “It’s not to park your car all day long. It’s not to leave it in the morning until you’re done with work in the afternoon.”