Taken for a Ride: Having an inspector issue the citation in the first place, without explanation.
It seems to me that in an attempt to reconcile the city budget with the lack of city income, the Emperor has decided to increase the number of "tickets" handed out, not by the police, but by roving city inspectors. It also appears that only the districts of the city that are wealthy enough to pay said tickets are being targeted. Everything from sidewalks to early trash placement is available for revenue raising.
The Emperor calls this a part of raising "Toledo Pride" (as everyone driving up I-75 is reminded of). The program should be "Take 'em for a Ride." City inspectors are apparently entering the property of residents of the city (although I'm not sure if this particular one was given permission to enter), issuing citations for everything they can find, and leaving. Disagree with the citation, and of course you're able to appeal, for only $50. But, it's before someone paid by the city, and if they find you in the wrong, expect to get slapped with additional costs for their time as well as the original fine. Not exactly a petition for a redress of your wrongs, is it? Where else does the same entity (the City of Toledo) act as the police detective, prosecutor, judge, and jury (excepting the IRS, of course).
I suspect that this spring, I'll wake to find an inspector out measuring the length of my lawn, trying desperately to find a blade of grass 1mm over the limit. When it happens (or should any inspector be upon my soil, of which my taxes are dutifully paid on), expect the following to happen.
- Ask the inspector to leave my property at once, while filming his/her reactions.
- If the inspector refuses, demand to see warant for search of my home.
- Lawsuit in state court, demanding that "probable cause" be shown prior to admitting any evidence of supposed "ordnance violation." Suit to include damages, legal fees, and compensation for mental anguish suffered that made it impossible for me to get a restful sleep.
If the city has problems making it's budget, perhaps its time to take a look at what we're spending on (tree lights, bike paths, etc), and not institute more hidden taxes. That's all those fines are, so let's use the "T" word for a change. And, while we're at it, how about removing another "T" word that is still applied to a money scheme ... the "Temporary" 3/4% Income Tax.
Margaritas ante Porcos,
Right Wing Toledo