City hires debt collector for delinquent property tax, parking violators

By Rachel DePompa - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) – If you have an unpaid parking ticket in Richmond, city hall is coming after you. The mayor announced a new plan this week to get tough on delinquent parking tickets and property taxes.

When the meter maids get you...make sure you pay up. The city's getting aggressive when it comes to paying your fines.

"If you came here and went to school got a ticket and moved to Connecticut or backed Connecticut. We're going to Connecticut go get our money," said Bryon Marshall, Richmond Chief Administrative Officer.

The city's hiring a collection company to go after delinquent fines. And there's a lot of money up for grabs. According to the city, there are nearly 48,000 outstanding parking tickets...and many of them are repeat offenders. In all, they owe city more than $3 million.

"I think if there's money sitting there, its incumbent on us to go get it," said City Council President Kathy Graziano.

Graziano says the money is income the city needs and should collect.

"If we're going to give out parking tickets and then not make an effort to collect the money from the parking tickets why would be bother to give out the parking tickets," Graziano said.

Meter violators are not alone. The city's also going to step up its effort to collect delinquent property taxes.

"We're focusing on our own staff to make sure they get the bills out on time. And that they follow up. That has not been the case," said Marshall.

And if the property tax follow up doesn't work, the city is hiring another private debt collect firm to make sure residents pay up.

You can let the mayor know what you think of his budget plan at a series of community meetings. The first is Wednesday night at Franklin Military Academy from six to eight. There are also meetings Thursday at Westover Hills Elementary School, and next Monday at the Main Library on East Franklin Street.

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