Citizens can write parking tickets at Somerset

By: Terry Oparka | Troy Times | Published October 29, 2013

Police will not be the only ones who can write parking tickets at Somerset Collection.

The Troy City Council unanimously amended the city code Oct. 21 to allow people other than police officers to write parking tickets, as is allowed under state law.

There has been a police officer assigned to Somerset Collection since July 1 who the Somerset Collection funds.

Troy Police Chief Gary Mayer explained to the council that reduction in staff has resulted in police exploring alternatives to provide service.

The amendment to the city code would be rolled out at Somerset Collection as a pilot program with Somerset security personnel, Mayer said. After eight hours of training by Troy police, Somerset security personnel will use handheld devices to issue the tickets on Somerset Collection property for 10 specific violations, including parking on a sidewalk, in a crosswalk, within 15 feet of a fire hydrant or in a space designated as handicapped.

Troy Police Lt. Russ Harden said the handheld devices work with a Bluetooth portable printer. The ticket is then forwarded electronically to the 52-4 District Court.

“Parking enforcement is way down,” Mayer told the council. “This shifts the burden of (parking ticket) complaints to Somerset.”

He added that police were very comfortable with piloting the program at Somerset Collection.

Harden said Beaumont Hospital, Royal Oak, also allows civilians to issue parking tickets on hospital property. 

Depending on the success of the pilot program at Somerset, the ordinance would allow other individuals to issue parking tickets on private property in Troy in the future. The ordinance will take effect in coming weeks.

The process of contesting a ticket would not change.

Somerset Collection representatives could not be reached for comment before press time.