From the NY Times:
It is an urban pastime borne out of scarcity, ingenuity and an abiding faith that no one is paying attention.
There is an obstacle: New Yorkers cannot always retain their favored parking spaces.
And there is a solution: Paint the curb or street, as a private citizen, to discourage others from parking. The maneuver is illegal, but often worth the risk as residents wager that enforcement agents and fellow drivers never catch on.
But with the practice spreading in recent years, according to 311 complaints, the city’s Transportation Department has proposed a sizable deterrent: quintupling the fine for “street defacement” to $250, from $50 — where it has stood for more than 20 years.
The department said complaints had doubled, to more than 1,300 annually, in the last five years, often prompted by a curb painted yellow or a resident or business scrawling “No Parking” on the street or sidewalk.