TOPEKA CITY HALL -- The large totals of Topekans who've logged unpaid parking tickets, and the fines they owe, are resonating with local residents.
The Topeka City Council turned down two appeals for a more lenient approach to the problem of collecting approximately $650,000 of overdue fines. Council members voted 7-2 to use the locking device called "the boot" to stop violators dead in their parking spaces.
Sylvia Ortiz and Andrew Gray voted no. Ortiz tried to amend the original ordinance to raise the total to eight, before a boot would be placed on a delinquent Topekan's car. Andrew Gray and Chad Manspeaker both voiced their approval to Karen Hiller's request that the city put the brakes on the booting idea, and send it back to committee for more study before it's implemented.
That request failed 5-4. John Alcala and Larry Wolgast said the council members have heard more than enough about the size of the parking fine problems, and said the city should move now to start collecting that money.
One of the offenders owes more than $42,000 in unpaid fines, but the Carol Williams at the top of the list, incidentally, is not the woman who's a member of the Kansas Ethics Commission.