Alexandria Tells Disabled Drivers to Pay Up

City says it's cracking down on parking fraud

By Andrea Berry and Ashley Brown
|  Friday, Jun 18, 2010  |  Updated 10:15 AM EDT
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Alexandria Tells Disabled Drivers to Pay Up

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Alexandria will charge disabled drivers for parking.

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Alexandria has decided that disabled drivers don't deserve a free ride. Starting in September, the city will start charging them for parking.

In the days of yore, anyone with a Virginia disabled placard could park in metered spots without paying. However, Alexandria now says that is a courtesy it can't afford. Everyone will pay, regardless of ability or disability.

Alexandria says the switch is designed to combat parking fraud, which has cost the city tens of thousands of dollars.

"We get complaints: Why is this segment of the public actually parking at no cost, and that cost is then being borne, then, by the general user of parking within the right of way?" said Richard Baier, Director of Alexandria's Transportation and Environmental Services.

Diabled drivers are expected to generate $133,000 for Alexandria in just the first year. But not everyone's happy about it.

Critics say disabled drivers are being punished just because some unauthorized drivers break the rules.

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