When did police become tax collectors?

Very recently I have heard of several cases of the outrageous $250 double parking fines in Baltimore. The amount of the fine isn't related to the seriousness of the crime. It is a sad day when you stop looking at the police as your friend but rather as a tax collector hiding behind a billboard waiting to pounce.

The worst case that I know of personally happened recently in our block. Meals on Wheels, which delivers food to housebound people, has a pickup station here. Three cars waiting to load food for delivery were each given a $250 ticket. The organization paid the $750 fine for them. Besides the charitable group losing so much money that they could use in better ways, it makes it harder to recruit volunteer drivers who would have to face this kind of harassment each time they go out. This case may help the city budget but not it's reputation.

This is certainly not an incentive to move into the city.

R. Phinney, Baltimore

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