The City of Amarillo is changing the way it handles parking tickets by making the majority of tickets civil instead of criminal violations.
The goal is to address the inconsistencies between the red light camera policy for civil violations and parking tickets.
Amarillo City Manager Jared Miller said this will makes things easier for both the city and person receiving a ticket.
“There’s a difference between the civil and criminal violation process. The criminal violation process is more time-consuming, the civil violation process is quicker,” Miller said. “It’s easier for the public to take care of, and we can streamline it at municipal court.”
This only applies to most traffic violations. There are still some offenses that will stay criminal.
“Parking in a handicap zone, parking in a fire zone, there are still some situations where it’s still going to be a criminal violation,” Miller said. “Parking over time in a time parking area, or parking without paying in a paid parking area, will now be civil violations.”
Paid parking in downtown only applies to around 900 spots within a three block radius of the parking garage and runs Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.