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Parking enforcement in Harrisburg just got easier - abc27 WHTM

Parking enforcement in Harrisburg just got easier

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HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) -

It's now a lot tougher to avoid -- and fight -- a parking ticket in the city of Harrisburg, thanks to smartphone technology.

Parking enforcement officers are now equipped with a dozen Samsung Galaxy II phones to ping license plate numbers. A unique app on the phone can look up any outstanding unpaid parking tickets, as well as if a car is stolen.

"If they enter a tag that's stolen, it's alerted on the phone and the phone vibrates so they don't have to be looking at the screen," Captain Colin Cleary said. "So it's an added safety function for them."

Officers can also take a picture of a car next to the expired meter or "no parking" sign, which makes it harder to fight in court.

"With this device, I can write the ticket, turn and take a picture and then all of that information is downloaded from here --- and sent to the office up there," parking enforcement officer Keith Wilson said. "So let's say, you have somebody parked at a no parking sign -- we didn't have any type of evidence to prove that they were parked there."

The smartphones were paid for through a federal police technology grant, meaning the city didn't have to shell out any money for the upgrade. The cost to maintain each of the 12 phones is $70 per month.

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