Second option more appealing?

Students who get a parking ticket can now turn to Student Government.

As of Oct. 1, the SG Supreme Court started accepting students’ appeals against parking tickets, Dustin Sachs, SG Supreme Court Justice, said Tuesday afternoon.

“The process is unchanged from its original form at the student level,” Sachs said.

The process is a simple one, beginning with the appeal. If a student receives a ticket, an appeal form can be obtained from Parking and Transportation Services. Students have 14 days to appeal the citation with a brief explanation regarding the violation.

After the appeal is submitted, a mediator at the Parking and Transportation Services office reviews the request and sends a letter to the student with a response, Sachs said.

If the student disagrees with the mediator’s decision, the student has the option to appeal to SG, which now holds the highest authority on parking tickets.

Junior Mahyar Shariati said parking is very strict on campus and that a second option is a good idea.

“I never tried appealing my parking tickets because I wasn’t aware there was another option,” Shariati said.

The Supreme Court will discuss the appeal at a standard court hearing. To aid their deliberation, the justices will have access to the petitioning student’s traffic file containing all decals purchased, previous parking tickets, previous appeals and fines paid.

“Likewise, SG will assess the mediator’s decision to see if any factors were overlooked,” Sachs said.

The Supreme Court then renders a decision based on all the aspects considered. If an appeal is warranted, it will be granted, especially if extenuating circumstances exist.

For example, if a rearview mirror fell off a car, and the decal, in turn, slid off, the citation would be discarded. However, Sachs said some excuses would not be accepted.

“For instance, ignorance is intolerable,” he said. “It is every student’s responsibility to know the parking rules. At this point in students’ lives, information will not be handed to them. It is the students’ responsibility to find out what the rules are. Not knowing the rules is unacceptable.”

Tardiness is not acceptable either, Sachs said.

“Students should allow themselves enough time to not only commute to campus, but to search for a parking spot in the event the lots are crowded,” Sachs said. “And if a student is unable to find a parking spot that correlates with his or her decal, be prepared to receive a ticket.”

Park-N-Ride decals may not be used in the Sun Dome parking lot, for instance, and blue commuter decals may not be used in the Andros parking lots.

Sachs said he advises students to be educated on the parking restrictions and appeal policy.

“Just because a similar case was dismissed at one point doesn’t mean that all cases of that kind will be denied,” he said. “Put extra money in the meter when using a metered parking spot. Better to waste 50 cents on an extra hour than pay the $15 fine for an expired meter.”

Students should be aware that cars with standard red resident and blue commuter decals can be parked anywhere after 5:30 p.m., and Park-N-Ride decals are accepted anywhere after 9 p.m. Monday through Friday. Students are welcome to park anywhere on campus on the weekends, as long as there is a valid decal on the rearview mirror.