Is it legal for a non-government entity to issue these notices?
Yes, if the company issuing them is a registered operator and if the parking facility is registered with the City. Go to the current list of registered lot operators.
Pay and park facilities: The operator of a pay and park facility may assess and collect a penalty from any parker found to have either parked without paying the required parking fees upon parking the vehicle, or parked without placing the proof of payment in the vehicle so that it is clearly visible through the windshield.
Non-pay private parking facilities: The operator of a non-pay private parking facility may assess and collect a penalty from any parker found to have parked without authorization.
Can they charge whatever they want for a penalty?
No, the penalty is indexed by City Code to the amount assessed by Parking Enforcement officers for overtime parking on the public right of way (parking tickets).
If you do not understand your penalty notice, contact the lot operator with your questions.
Penalty notices, penalty payment letters and any subsequent demands for payment must include:
- The name, address and telephone number of the operator;
- The vehicle’s make, model, color and license plate number;
- The time and date the penalty notice was issued;
- The exact location of the facility;
- Any facility number that may be assigned by the operator;
- The amount of the penalty demanded;
- Instructions describing deadlines and acceptable methods of payment;
- Warning that an Administrative Fee may be assessed if the payment of the penalty is not received within 10 days of issuance of a penalty notice;
- Any additional penalty that may be added if not paid within 30 days; and
- A statement that the vehicle owner may submit a written complaint to the Revenue Bureau if attempts to resolve the complaint with the operator have been unsuccessful anytime within 90 days of the date of the first penalty payment letter. The Bureau’s mailing address must be included on penalty payment letters.
How long will it take to respond to my complaint?
Complaints are collected by the Pay and Park and Non-Pay Private Parking Facilities Programand a report is sent to the auditing company every week.
The collection process must be suspended immediately until a determination is made on the complaint.
The information is reviewed, to see if there is evidence of any Code violations. A re-inspection of the lot may be necessary to verify that all required signs were posted at the time the penalty notice was issued. The complaint resolution may be as simple as forwarding the copy of a parking payment receipt to the auditing company.
You will be notified of the determination in writing by the Revenue Bureau Pay and Park and Non-Pay Private Parking Facilities Program.
It may take up to 60 days from the day your complaint is received to receive that notice.
How many registered lots are there?
Lots are registered and deactivated throughout the year. There are usually about 180 active lots. Go to the current list of registered lot operators.
The machine was not working when I tried to pay, why did I get a penalty notice?
The policy at the pay to park lots is usually posted on a sign at the payment machine, words to the effect of “If machine does not dispense a ticket, do not park in parking facility.” The machines are maintained daily but something may go wrong later in the day, or maybe there is a problem with the payment method you tried to use. There is always a customer service number that you can call for assistance, but if you leave your car in the lot without valid proof of payment you risk receiving a parking penalty notice.
There was no notice on my car. Can I ignore the letter they sent me?
No. If you feel that you received the demand for payment letter in error, contact the Revenue Bureau and we will work to verify the identity of the vehicle for you.
I have a handicapped parking placard and parked in a spot reserved for handicapped parking. Why did I get a penalty notice?
The handicapped parking placards authorize the holder to park for free in spaces with more than a 30 minute time limit on the public right of way.
In the private lots the placard grants the privilege of parking in the reserved spaces, but does not grant free parking. The registered operators have been adding stickers to the blue signs that say “Permit holder responsible for payment” to help clarify any misunderstanding.
Per the Oregon Department of Motor Vehicles website the Pay and Park and Non-Pay Parking Facilities Program has the authority to regulate specific permit types:
Renewable, Temporary, Temporary Duplicate (travel), Family, or Foreign Disabled Parking Permit
The renewable, temporary, temporary duplicate (travel), family or foreign disabled parking permit allows a person with a disability, or another person while transporting the person with a disability to or from the parking location to:
- Park in a public parking zone that has a limit of more than 30 minutes. Park in any space reserved for disabled parking with the exception of the wheelchair user spaces.
Wheelchair User Permits
The Wheelchair disabled parking permit allows a person with a disability, or another person while transporting the person with a disability to or from the parking location to:
- Park in a public parking zone that has a limit of more than 30 minutes without paying the parking meter fee;*
- Park in a public parking zone that has a limit of more than 30 minutes without being charged overtime penalties; or*
- Park in any space reserved for disabled parking.
* Local parking authorities may allow these privileges for any disabled parking permit holder. Check with local authorities for regulations governing these fees.
The operator must void the penalty if the parker or registered owner provides evidence within 30 days of issuance of the penalty notice that the parking fee payment was made at the time the vehicle was parked at the facility or that the parker was authorized to park. Contact the registered operator that issued the parking penalty notice for instructions on how to submit your valid proof of payment.
You may file a complaint any time up to 90 days from the date of the first mailed penalty payment letter.