What Should James Vacca’s Pet Peeve Committee Tackle Next?

December 2010: Transportation Committee Chair James Vacca rallies to keep parking prices low.

James Vacca is redefining the role of the City Council Transportation Committee.

If you’re concerned about issues such as the gradual collapse of the transit system, the scandalous waste of taxpayer money used to subsidize parking for billion-dollar businesses, or the shocking injustices suffered by victims of traffic violence, there isn’t much on the agenda for you. On the other hand, if you’re a car owner who’s distraught over the appearance of bike lanes, or who perceives the enforcement of parking laws as a personal affront, Vacca’s committee is at your service.

The latest indignity to garner the attention of the committee is the sticker that the Department of Sanitation attaches to the windows of cars that impede city street sweepers. While it seems like a distinctly Noo Yawk brand of poetic justice — your car trashes up the city, the city trashes up your car — according to Vacca and fellow City Council Member David Greenfield, it is insult added to injury.

“A $60 ticket or $65…is enough,” says Vacca (the fine is $45 to $65, depending on location). “The sticker is cruel, the sticker is overkill, it is unnecessary, it is excessive.”

“It’s really cruel and unusual,” agrees Greenfield, who has proposed a bill to eliminate the stickers.

Though sanitation officials say the sticker, in use since 1988, is a more effective deterrent than a fine — a point arguably bolstered by the hyperbole employed to condemn it — the safe money says the council will again bow to drivers who flout the law and order the policy altered or abandoned.

Assuming the suggestion box is open to all New Yorkers, and not just the affluent car-owning minority, what transportation-related policies do you consider “cruel and unusual”? No gripe is too trifling for Vacca’s Pet Peeve Committee.

ALSO ON STREETSBLOG

The Greenfield/Vacca/Quinn Parking Panderfest Can’t Fix This

|
The viral video of the day, courtesy of Dan Amira at New York Mag, is this bout over a free parking space on the Upper East Side. It’s got all the hallmarks of NYC street dysfunction — traffic backups, aggressive use of motor vehicles, honking, road rage, left jabs. In related news, David Greenfield, James Vacca, and […]

What City Do Christine Quinn and James Vacca Represent?

|
In February, no fewer than nine people were killed by drivers while walking in NYC, according to data compiled by Streetsblog. The victims included five seniors and a 6-year-old child. Two victims were on the sidewalk when they were killed. Another was struck by an NYPD officer in a crash that police refuse to explain […]

James Vacca’s Pet Peeve Committee Is Back in Session

|
The City Council transportation committee met today, and if you thought the council was due for a break from dreaming up motorist entitlements, think again: this afternoon’s agenda was all about parking. On the docket were three bills: one to require DOT to provide notice before changing street signs that affect parking; one to allow […]