APD issues over 1,000 tickets for no license plate in 2022 - Albuquerque Journal

APD issues over 1,000 tickets for no license plate in 2022

DRIVERS DO GET CITED FOR NO PLATES: Metro-area drivers have all seen it – vehicles on the road with no license plate, not even a paper tag.

Bill D. emails “In a very long time I have only seen one car pulled over for a traffic violation. What I do see very often – three cars at the same time at a red light on Carlisle and Menaul on May 27 – are cars with no license plates. It is obvious to me there is no law enforcement simply because the police have more pertinent issues.

“In any case, if you like to speed, etc., take the plate off your car. That nullifies the cameras. If in the apparently highly unlikely event you get pulled over, just claim it must have been stolen and you did not know.”

And Vicki Meagher has “counted 23 cars in Albuquerque so far with no license plate. I’ve never seen this phenomenon in any other state. Can you tell me why people do this and why it’s allowed?”

It’s not. State statute 66-3-18 says “the registration plate shall be attached to the rear of the vehicle for which it is issued.” But law enforcement has to see the violation, and the Albuquerque Police Department has been trying for years to get to 1,000 sworn officers to police a city dealing with a crime wave and more than 600 signalized intersections.

That said, APD’s Rebecca Atkins reports officers routinely issue thousands of citations for no registration/license plate.

In 2021 2,062 tickets were written to drivers who did not have proof of registration (66-3-1 in the traffic code), which comes with your plate. Another 1,266 got tickets for not having a plate or paper tag on the vehicle (66-3-18).

APD is way ahead of that pace in 2022. Through May 24, 1,772 citations were written for no proof of registration, and 1,014 for not having a plate or paper tag.

FYI the fines are $50 for no registration, $25 for no plate or for a lost/damaged registration, plate or title.

CALL 311 FOR BUS STOP CLEANUP: Wallace Anderson shares in an email “the bus stops in Albuquerque are a disgrace. Many are piled up with food, blankets, human waste and just plain unsanitary. The bus stop at Academy and San Mateo has a burned-out trash can chained to the bus stop sign pole. It has been there for months.

“Who is responsible for cleaning these stops, and what kind of message does it send to visitors and regular citizens who witness this? … Why are we ignoring cleaning up these public areas?”

Scott Cilke, a city public information officer, says “ABQ Ride is committed to providing riders clean and safe environments to participate in public transit. If ever a member of the community sees something different, we encourage them to call 311 and report the issue. Transit will address it as quickly as possible, as it did with the transit stops referenced by your reader. Besides that, ABQ Ride also works to clean stops routinely as well as via community clean-up events (most recently on June 4) where they and community volunteers team up to pick up debris and clean up transit stops.”

FIGHTING ILLEGAL PARKING: Karen emails “we have a big parking problem in our neighborhood – Unser and McMahon – and the (city) parking division refuses to address the issues. First is parking on the sidewalk. We cannot walk on our sidewalks because of cars, trucks, trailers and motor homes either hanging over or completely blocking the sidewalk. … We have children and people with disabilities who can not use the sidewalk because they are blocked. This is a safety issue. … Second issue is vehicles parked in intersections, crosswalks and within 10 feet of a crosswalk.”

Chapter 8 of the city’s ordinances clearly bars parking that blocks a sidewalk, street or pedestrian crossing. Karen says “all of these parking-on-the-sidewalk infractions have been reported in 311. The majority of which are still there. The reason why we have to keep reporting them is because people will not move them if they receive a citation every once in awhile. They are not compelled to resolve the issue. What needs to be done to get the city of Albuquerque parking to do its job?”

Apparently, more staff.

Cilke says “Parking Management is responsible for responding to parking inquiries during regular business hours via 311. After hours, APD fills in, and complaints can be channeled to 242-COPS. However, Parking Management does not have the resources to monitor parking in all corners of the city. For that reason, we rely on our community to report parking violations via 311.”

FYI improper parking is also a $25 fine under state statute; three unpaid tickets and the city can boot the vehicle under ordinance 8-1-3-12.

Editorial page editor D’Val Westphal tackles commuter issues for the metro area on Mondays. Reach her at 823-3858; dwestphal@abqjournal.com; or 7777 Jefferson NE, Albuquerque, NM, 87109.

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