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In Myrtle Beach, some streets attract bevy of tickets

The secret is out about parking in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, and it could help residents and vacationers save some money on traffic citations.

A review of parking tickets issued in the city in 2011 showed that the beachside Withers Drive was the most popular spot in the city for tickets regarding parking-meter violations, with more than 2,200 citations written. On the parallel Withers Alley, an additional 478 were written.

The nearby numbered streets - Seventh through 12th avenues North - saw a cumulative 2,400 tickets issued.

The city's Downtown Redevelopment Corp. has a contract with a private parking firm to run its meters. In the 2012 fiscal year, the city agency paid the parking firm about $650,000, but reaped a return of more than $1.8 million from the meters. A city spokesman said the parking money is pumped back into downtown capital improvement projects, as well as maintenance in the oceanfront area.

The city also uses the private firm to collect the fines from the traffic citations. Last year, it paid about $35,000, but recouped more than $150,000 in fines from the service.

For those who receive parking tickets, there is an opportunity to appeal. The city issued almost 11,000 tickets last year, with more than 1,000 of them overturned on appeal, according to city statistics.

There are several grounds for appeal. Proof that a driver has a city decal that a ticket writer might not have seen is one factor. Paying via cellphone through the Parkmobile technology is another if, by chance, the electronic transfer had not been promptly registered.

Other ways to win an appeal are if a driver can show handicapped access permits that perhaps were improperly displayed. Valid license plates bearing Medal of Honor, Disabled American Veteran or Purple Heart status also are grounds for a potential successful appeal.

Source: WBMF News, "Parking ticket hot spots in Myrtle Beach," Paula Caruso, Aug. 9, 2012

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