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Parking Violations at Courthouse

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

McHenry County, Illinois

Parking Violations at Courthouse

Gus Philpott
Woodstock Advocate
September 20, 2007

At a recent Coffee with the Chief one of the officers mentioned that he has been enforcing parking violations not only at Mapletree Apartments but in the parking lot of the McHenry County Government Center.

I wonder whether he has been ticketing vehicles parked in the striped no-parking area in front of the jail entrance, where probably it’s mostly employees who park. Today a blue Chrysler minivan with Illinois license NVP 384 was there, and recently 2-3 motorcycles were parked in the same striped, no-parking area.

One day I was in the courthouse on business and asked one of the security guards about a car parking in a handicapped parking space near the back door. First, the guard wanted to know who I was. Like it mattered…

When I pointed out the vehicle, which was not displaying any handicapped parking placard or license plate, the guard said, “Oh, that’s (someone’s) car.” He knew the car and the employee. Apparently, the car belonged to an employee with a physical handicap, and the guard finally said he would call him.

I don’t really object to that, if the guard calls him without delay and the employee comes quickly either to move his vehicle or display the handicap permit. The problem was the guard’s nose got out of joint at being asked to address the parking violation. Why would it matter who I was?!

Next time, should I just summon the Woodstock Police Department and ask them to hang a $250 ticket on the car?

What if the guard had answered, “I recognize that car, and it belongs to a handicapped employee. He must have forgotten to display his placard. I’ll call him right now and he’ll come immediately and take care of it. Would that be okay?”

That would have been terrific, but the “I’m the law here” attitude is what bugged me.

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