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UMD Ticketing

I’m newish to town and still trying to figure out regulations. Can I get some advice here?

I live on Grandview Ave, down by Eighth Street. You don’t need a college permit to park there. I forgot to switch sides yesterday. My fault. I screwed up. Normally I remember. I saw the ticket on my car and was prepared to pay my fine to the city of Duluth.

Instead, it said UMD Parking Services. I called UMD Police to say that I am not in a “Permit” zone, so why were their police ticketing me. She stated that “sometimes the UMD Police do go to streets nearby to look for infractions.” Nothing against her, she was very nice on the phone and this isn’t about her, she was just doing her job.

Shouldn’t there be a clearly marked zone for where UMD can ticket, like the permit areas? Can UMD ticket anywhere they feel is close enough. Is Fourth street close enough? What’s the line?

Again, I messed up and forgot. Had the ticket said city of Duluth, I would be mailing the check today.

What are your thoughts on this one? It kind of irks me that they can ticket what they deem is close enough.

22 Comment(s)

  1. They are police officers. They have all the same powers as a Duluth Police officer does.

    If they were driving down the street in West Duluth, and you sped past them, they could pull you over and issue you a ticket just like any other officer.

    So no, there does not need to be a clearly marked zone as to where they can or can not ticket. If they see you doing something that they can ticket for, they will.

    Dorkus | Jul 16, 2012 | New Comment
  2. My understanding is that the UMDPD are part of the MN State Patrol.

    baci | Jul 16, 2012 | New Comment
  3. I’m not sure if they’re exactly considered part of the State Patrol, but they are indeed state-employed police officers and have jurisdiction over the entire state. They aren’t bound by the boundaries of the UMD campus. They frequently patrol the nearby neighborhoods where a lot of college students live. It takes some of the workload off of the Duluth Police. They also work with local law enforcement agencies on cases that happen on and near campus. It’s summertime and there’s not a lot going on on-campus right now, so I’d imagine they probably have some extra time to go around and look for parking violations.

    Tom | Jul 16, 2012 | New Comment
  4. Pay the ticket immediately.

    Trying to deal with UMD Parking Services invites the most screwed-up, bureaucratic nightmare imaginable. The check you write to pay your ticket goes to some place in New Jersey or some other such nonsensical destination. There is no local court of appeal or system for due process with a UMD Parking Services ticket. Or at least, that was the case a few years ago when my wife and I ran afoul of them.

    We were renting some stuff from the UMD theater department for a high school play. We parked two cars for about five minutes in a marked “Loading Zone” behind the Marshall Performing Arts Center (with our safety blinkers going) and lugged our furniture outside to find each vehicle tagged with $25 tickets.

    When I called Parking Services to explain the situation, a woman there told me cheerfully that she would nullify the tickets and not to sweat it. A month later we got letters from this outfit saying the tickets were still unpaid and had now ballooned to well over a $100 each and were still climbing. When I called Parking Services to explain the situation, a very curt, rude woman (not the original person I had spoken to, but her supervisor) basically called me a liar and told me to pay up.

    They had all sorts of ways to screw up our credit, etc. and there was no possible way to go to court or other way to sort this whole thing. So we paid them. I’m still fuming, and as a result, we have quit contributing to any alumni causes or other UMD charities/functions. An overreaction perhaps, but we were made to feel just that angry and helpless.

    This undid years of goodwill between us and the adjacent university (which is our neighbor, and of whom, up to that time, we had been solid boosters). In my book, UMD Parking Service gets a big, big zero in terms of university/public relations.

    In your case, thomasbury, I think it’s very interesting that you were ticketed for a city ordinance by UMD Parking Services while parked off campus. Where does this money go? Perhaps there is a mechanism by which it is funneled back to the city, but I’d be very interested to know where your ticket says to send the money. And even though you fully admit your guilt in this matter, I’d be incredibly pissed to discover that the same outsourced system I encountered could ticket me in front of my house with (if my experience still holds true), no opportunity for due process or grievance.

    Good luck! (And thanks for the opportunity to vent. I’ve waited years for an appropriate forum to get this off of my chest!)

    Dave P | Jul 16, 2012 | New Comment
  5. It looks like I will be sending my money to Tarrytown NY. To pay for the Duluth City Ordinance that I violated.

    I have no problem getting a ticket for what I did wrong. I just think Duluth ought to get my money for breaking their ordinance and not UMD or even Tarrytown NY.

    Those are my .02 cents.

    tomasbury | Jul 16, 2012 | New Comment
  6. The name of the Tarrytown, N.Y., collection company is Complus Data Innovations. It has been the city of Duluth’s parking-ticket collector since 2009.

    St. Louis County handled it previously, but the county opted to stop offering the service.

    Complus initially kept 13 percent of what it collects from Duluth. When the contract was renewed at the end of 2011 the amount was reduced to 11.5 percent.

    You can read all the exciting details in the PDF of Duluth City Council Resolution 11-0669.

    Paul Lundgren | Jul 16, 2012 | New Comment
  7. Good to know about Tarrytown. It is interesting to see how this whole operation works. I suppose from now on, I will be a bit more vigilant on moving the old family truckster.

    tomasbury | Jul 16, 2012 | New Comment
  8. Now, I owe it to myself to tell you that if you’re taking the whole tribe cross-country, the Wagon Queen Family Truckster… You think you hate it now, wait ’til you drive it.

    pbrstreetgang | Jul 16, 2012 | New Comment
  9. Yup, Tarrytown, New York, that was it Paul. I can’t help wonder whether there is an opportunity for due process (traffic court appearance) with the ticket that tomasbury received off campus, versus the ones that my wife and I were given at UMD. I haven’t been issued a parking ticket in Duluth ever, other than that one time at UMD…if you get tagged in say, Canal Park, is there the choice of pleading not guilty and taking it to court? If not, isn’t this (not to mention quickly ratcheting up the fine to truly absurd proportions) a violation of some pretty fundamental rights? And if so, how does this Tarrytown outfit sort out the difference?

    P.S. I’m clearly still pretty hot around the collar, even several years after my experience, but I will admit that it may have had more to do with one UMD employee’s poor public relations skills than with the institution itself. Still, I challenge anyone forced to pay out several hundred dollars for two parking tickets--with no recourse or opportunity for explanation or compromise --to let bygones be bygones. UMD, you will never get another penny from us.

    Dave P | Jul 16, 2012 | New Comment
  10. I’ve gotten a few parking tickets in my day, and although I had to send the checks to Tarrytown the past couple of times I got nabbed, I seem to recall notice included with the ticket that one has the option of going to an office in City Hall and arguing one’s case if one feels that the ticket is unjustified.

    Claire | Jul 17, 2012 | New Comment
  11. Thanks Claire. If that is indeed the case, then the question I have now is why UMD doesn’t afford people the same rights as the city, since they’re both using the same system? Grrrrr…

    Dave P | Jul 17, 2012 | New Comment
  12. I was under the impression that Tarrytown was only involved if it goes to collection.

    If you pay it within 7 days, the money stays here, doesn’t it?

    Dorkus | Jul 17, 2012 | New Comment
  13. Nope. The envelope that UMD put on my car says send check within 10 days to Tarrytown. They just seem to be the collector of funds. I imagine if I don’t pay it within 10 days they become the collection agency as well.

    tomasbury | Jul 17, 2012 | New Comment
  14. I don’t know if this helps or hurts this whole discussion but from the UMD parking website:

    “Tickets issued by UMD Parking or UMD Police come in an orange envelope. UMD Parking only issues tickets for parking violations on campus, but UMD Police may issue tickets for both on and off campus parking violations. The City of Duluth tickets have lime green envelopes and are only given for off-campus parking violations.”

    Muns | Jul 17, 2012 | New Comment
  15. Muns, that is the interesting part to me. I understand that they can issue tickets for both ON and OFF Campus. I would just like to know how far away from campus they will issue parking tickets.

    So, the basic question is, can UMD issue parking tickets all over town? It is off campus right?

    I’m paying the fine, but it just seems odd to me for the Campus Police to have the capability to give parking tickets for off-campus things.

    tomasbury | Jul 17, 2012 | New Comment
  16. So the logical train of thought that I take off with is this —- and this is what my brain does to me.

    If the campus has a down year cash wise, not enough students, or the alumni campaign goes poorly, can it just start hitting the town with fines for parking violations?

    And then, does the city lose out on that money, or can you get both city and UMD violations for the same event?

    tomasbury | Jul 17, 2012 | New Comment
  17. Here’s what I take away from this: UMD Police may occasionally issue parking tickets near campus, and any off-campus ticket issued by them functions basically the same as a city ticket, which means all but 11.5% will go to the city, not the school. But I do think tomasbury’s Big Brother scenario has a degree of merit within the campus itself. Cops or meter people there could, in fact, issue spurious tickets willy-nilly to garner revenue, and because there is no due process for students or others ticketed on-campus, alleged offenders are offered no recourse or mercy.

    Dave P | Jul 17, 2012 | New Comment
  18. UMD Police are state police officers. They could ticket you anywhere in the state. Realistically, they’re only going to patrol on and near campus. Considering that a high percentage of the homes within a few blocks of campus are occupied by students, it makes sense to me that the campus police monitor those areas and allow the city police to worry about other stuff.

    I have gotten one parking ticket on campus and I was illegally parked, so I didn’t bother fighting it. But I’ve heard horror stories about the appeals process.

    So I can’t personally speak about the due process of UMD ticketing, but I think it really makes sense for UMD Police to be patrolling the college neighborhoods near campus.

    Tom | Jul 17, 2012 | New Comment
  19. I’ve never received a ticket from UMD but its website seems pretty clear if you wish to contest a ticket.

    Parking Tickets
    Tickets issued by UMD Parking or UMD Police come in an orange envelope. UMD Parking only issues tickets for parking violations on campus, but UMD Police may issue tickets for both on and off campus parking violations. The City of Duluth tickets have lime green envelopes and are only given for off-campus parking violations.

    Please send questions to:

    UMD Parking Services
    245 Kirby Plaza
    (218) 726-7433

    Tickets issued by UMD Parking or UMD Police
    Tickets may be disputed within 10 days of issuance by contacting Parking Services. Failure to respond to the ticket will cause late fees to be added:

    If not paid within 10 days, a $5.00 late fee will be added. If not paid within 20 days after late notice date, an additional $40.00 late fee will be added.

    Jadiaz | Jul 17, 2012 | New Comment
  20. Oh man, just when I’d finally settled down a bit… Let me just say that “disputing” a ticket by “contacting parking services” is a far cry from due process. On a good day, you may talk to a nice lady who listens sympathetically and promises you that all is forgiven, only to find that a month later your violation is still active, the fee has more than quadrupled, and the surly supervisor grunts that “no one in this office would ever have told you your ticket would be dismissed.” Negotiate with them at your peril.

    Dave P | Jul 17, 2012 | New Comment
  21. I have no intention of arguing the fine. I did it so I will pay. My check goes in the mail today.

    I still think the University gets my money for this one, as it says UMD Parking Services…. Tarrytown NY. But maybe the City gets a cut. I hope so, as it happened off campus. Oh well.

    Thanks for all the advice on who gets paid and what to do.

    Still newish to town, trying to learn all the rules


    tomasbury | Jul 18, 2012 | New Comment
  22. That’s why I go in person for these things. A recording or a written statement with a signature can do wonders. Never trust over the phone business about these things.

    Jadiaz | Jul 18, 2012 | New Comment

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