Beefed up parking enforcement results in more tickets, fines in Steamboat Springs

More people are finding parking tickets on their vehicles this year after the city stepped up parking enforcement. The increased enforcement will continue this summer.

— Statistics show the city of Steamboat Springs has made good on a recent promise to step up enforcement of its parking regulations.

Steamboat Springs parking citations

2016:

Citations: 1,204

Warnings: 1,672

2015:

Citations: 1,069

Warnings: 1,592

2014:

Citations: 800

Warnings: 1,617

Source: Steamboat Springs Police Department

According to data the city's police department provided Monday, the city issued about 50 percent, or 404, more parking citations last year than in 2014.

The city issued 1,204 parking citations in 2016.

The amount of revenue the city collected from the citations nearly doubled, from $26,380 in 2014 to $50,904 in 2016.

However, it's important to note the city continues to hand out significantly more warnings for parking violations than tickets.

The increased parking enforcement was ordered by the City Council in an attempt to mitigate parking congestion, especially in the downtown area.

In recent years, the council has bucked a recommendation from a parking consultant to beef up parking enforcement even more with a license plate reader that could cover greater areas in shorter amounts of time.

What do the stats for other types of tickets and citations in the city look like in recent years?

A report from Police Chief Cory Christensen provided some interesting statistics.

They include the following.

• The police department made 3,163 traffic stops in 2016. Officers issued 1,347 citations and 1,816 warnings to drivers, meaning about 57 percent of the contacts resulted in warnings versus citations.

• 74 people were arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol last year

• Animal control officers fielded about 863 complaints about animals last year. The level of complaints marked an increase from 2015, when 693 complaint calls were phoned in.

• Animal bites were up from 42 cases in 2015 to 51 cases in 2016.

• Overall, the policed department received 14,251 calls for service in 2016, which marked a 7.8 percent increase from 2015. Christensen noted last year's call level was still similar to what the city saw in 2012, 2013 and 2014.

To reach Scott Franz, call 970-871-4210, email scottfranz@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @ScottFranz10

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