Parking fines for lacking disabled sign start at $250
Is it out of the ordinary to get a $250 parking ticket for not having your disabled parking placard displayed on the mirror when you park? I was at the Honolulu Zoo and forgot to put the parking placard on and got a ticket. I have to admit that this was not the first time, but I'm elderly and human and I forget. I think it's outrageous that I was fined that amount.
Answer: Chapter 291-57 of the Hawaii Revised Statutes sets the penalties for not displaying a proper placard while in a disabled parking stall.
The minimum fine is $250, but judges have the discretion to go as high as $500.
In Honolulu, however, the minimum fine handed out by judges has been $260, said Sgt. Emilio Laganse, of the Honolulu Police Department's Traffic Division.
The minimum fine set by law is "not an absolute, only a minimum," said Francine Wai, executive director, state Disability and Communication Access Board.
"Traffic court judges annually meet to determine what they want as fines when there is a 'range' or a 'minimum' or 'maximum' set instead of an absolute set in law," she said.
They do this for all the traffic violations, she said, so they can be consistent in all four counties.
For the disabled-parking violation, "the $260 (fine) has been the agreed-upon floor amongst the judges for a few years," Wai said.
Meanwhile, Chapter 291-57 does make an exception for people who do have valid placards, but fail to display them.
In those cases, the fines can range from $25 to $100, plus any court-related costs. You indicated you had been fined $25 in the past.
Q: With the sudden closing of Jackie Chan's restaurant in Ala Moana Center, I am wondering what will happen to people who have gift cards. Will we be able to cash it in or will it be honored in some other way?
A: Call 943-2426.
We called that number for Jackie's Kitchen, which closed at the end of June, and were told by a woman who answered last week that she would try to accommodate anyone with a gift certificate.
"Any business with outstanding gift certificates should make good on them," said Stephen Levins, executive director of the state Office of Consumer Protection. If not, he said you can file a complaint with his office.
Call 587-3222 or go online to www.hawaii.gov/dcca/areas/ocp.
To the jerk who tossed a block of ice from Liliha Street onto the H-1 Freeway on July 1. I was driving to a funeral in Mililani and that action could have killed me or my mother, or both of us and many others, if I had gotten into an accident. Luckily for me and my mom, my car's front windshield did not break. What uncivilized person would toss a big block of ice from the overpass to the freeway? May you have lots of "bachi." -- Toru of Hawaii Kai
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