2011-03-25 / Top Stories

Contest Your New York City Tickets Online

Mayor Bloomberg and City Council leaders announced the launch of a new program to allow New Yorkers to contest tickets online, eliminating the need for a time consuming trip to an in-person hearing. Online hearings – part of the City’s NYC Simplicity agenda to make City government more efficient, innovative, and customer-focused – are now available for parking tickets administered by the Department of Finance and many tickets administered by the Environmental Control Board, including health and sanitation code violations. Online hearings will produce efficiencies for City government, reducing spending on paper and mailings, eliminating paperwork processing, and increasing the productivity of administrative law judges, who will be able to make use of time between live hearings to review digital cases.

“Enforcing our traffic laws is critically important to protecting public safety, promoting business activity, and reducing gridlock and congestion,” said Bloomberg. “No one likes to get a ticket, but it shouldn’t have to be so difficult and time-consuming to contest one. This new program will make it much easier and faster to contest a ticket – and save New Yorkers from having to take off from work to do it.”

“Online hearings are not only easier, they are less expensive for the City,” said Finance Commissioner Frankel. “We will be able to conduct more hearings faster, and reduce costs. This is a part of our ongoing commitment to automate and upgrade our processes to increase customer service and create more efficiency for New Yorkers.”

In 2009, Bloomberg and Speaker Quinn announced the formation of the Regulatory Review Panel to modernize the rulemaking process with particular attention on enhancing public participation and identifying and fixing systemic problems with existing rules and rule implementation. The panel received input from more than 200 small business owners, industry representatives and other stakeholders through outreach sessions with business owners in all five boroughs, meetings with various industry and civic groups, and written comments from the general public. One of the 14 recommendations was to enable businesses to contest violations online and avoid having to appear before administrative tribunals.

Online hearings allow the users to enter a written defense and submit supporting materials such as photos or other documents which they would like the judge to consider when deciding their case. Once submitted, the defense is considered by an Administrative Law Judge who will send out the decision via email for parking and other Department of Finance tickets and by regular mail, often within 30 days, for Environmental Control Board tickets.

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