Ticket-happy city inspectors would have to get the picture under legislation being pushed by a city councilman.
New Yorkers who receive summonses for sanitation violations, health code violations at restaurants and some parking offenses wouldn’t have to pay unless there was photographic proof.
Councilman James Vacca (D-Bronx) says the measure is a no-brainer with today’s technology. “People have a right to insist that there be evidence of what they’re being charged with,” Vacca said. “Why have a he said-she said situation? ”
Sanitation workers would have to snap pictures when they fine homeowners for uncovered garbage or unshoveled sidewalks, and health inspectors scrutinizing restaurants would have to photograph the mouse droppings and dirty counters they plan to ding business owners for.
The parking ticket requirements, which would start with a one-year pilot program, would require photos with any ticket for parking too close to a fire hydrant or in a crosswalk; in a bus stop, a handicapped spot or bike lane or for failing to display a license plate.
Vacca said the move would cut down on complaints from New Yorkers who feel nickel and dimed by the city, which collects more than $800 million a year in fines.
“People are basically found guilty until they prove their innocence,” he said. “I want people to be innocent until proven guilty.”
A separate bill to be introduced by Councilman Vincent Ignizio (R-Staten Island) would outfit some health inspectors with body cameras to make sure inspections are on the up and up.
But he said it would also aid city agencies by discouraging people from filing false challenges when they’re clearly guilty.