SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – A new state law is aimed at taking the stress off drivers and making it easier to find a parking space.
Starting Monday, drivers will no longer have to pay for spaces with broken parking meters.
For Lillian Vidovic, a journey downtown involves hunting for just the right parking space.
“When I do come here, I bring my coins or something or somebody with me!” she said.
But she says even when you find a spot, sometimes the meter just doesn’t work.
“Should you hang up $10 on the thing and wait for somebody to pick it up?” Vidovic asked.
The new state law says California drivers cannot be charged for parking at a broken parking meter or broken payment center.
“I think it should always be like that!” Vidovic said. “You shouldn’t have to pay if the meter is broken. How can you pay?”
But in some cities, that hasn’t always been the case.
“I learned never park at a broken meter because yes, you can get a ticket,” said Chuchin Baez, who lives in Van Nuys.
Baez got a $63 citation in Los Angeles County.
Assemblywoman Blanca Rubio authored the legislation, saying charging drivers for broken city property is unfair.
A spokesperson for the city of Sacramento says: “if an individual space parking meter is out of service, parking enforcement should not issue a citation if the officer can verify the meter is malfunctioning.”
Additionally, the city asks that drivers report any broken meter they encounter.
A group called the California Public Parking Association opposes the law. It says the new rule could lead people to vandalize parking meters.
“I think it’s great,” said Jaime Gurevich, who lives in El Dorado Hills. “I think I’ll go find all the broken meters I can!”
But drivers still have to keep an eye on the clock. The new law says when a meter is broken, the posted time is still the limit.