May 01, 2017

How City of Toronto punishes drivers who pick cheapest way to pay tickets

David MenziesMission Specialist

Recently, Yours Truly received a traffic ticket. But this rant isn’t a woe-is-me tale. My focus is on how monopolies are inherently bad. And that the very worst monopolies are government-run monopolies.

Here’s the deal: to pay off my $80 ticket, I was given three options.

I could pay in person, which is a free service to the consumer albeit a bit of schlep. Yet, keep in mind that this is also the most expensive way for the city to process tickets given the inherent staffing costs.

Or, I could mail-in my payment, which means I’d have to spend a buck on postage. And there would still be a cost to the city, given that a staffer would have to open those envelopes to process the fines.

But then there’s Option #3:

Go online and pay the ticket. Handy for me and by far the lowest-cost option for the city.

Get this, though: upon going online, the city nails you with a $3.50 “convenience fee.”

Compare this to how the city treats online payments to the way the privately-run 407 toll highway operates.

WATCH as I show how this private company incentivizes users rather than penalizing them, the way government does.


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commented 2017-05-10 21:23:57 -0400
Just to let everyone know….this “convenience fee” does not just get assessed in Toronto. It also happens here in Edmonton.
Absolutely ludicrous!
Also, photo radar in Edmonton is strategically and purposefully set up in locations where the speed limit is either calibrated ridiculously low or the speed limit signage is hidden.
In addition, Edmonton is ticketing drivers for “speeding” less than 5 – 10 k. over the posted limit (if one can see the actual signage, often purposefully camouflaged.
Of course, city council and our wonderous baby boy mayor, Don Iverson, screeches that all these photo radar tickets have reduced traffic deaths immeasurably (a dubious statement at best).
What has been immeasurable is the copious influx of illicit funds into the city’s coffers.
commented 2017-05-01 20:29:56 -0400
Then there’s option 4 for those who want payback for the sleazy city bylaws infractions cash grab (essentially parking and other chicken poop municipal bylaw infractions – don’t do this with a summons ticket from a provincial hiway traffic act infraction) – simply don’t pay them – drive them nuts sending notices and vacant threats and when you figure they have spent 80 bucks in processing and postage harassing you mail it to them in Quarters.
commented 2017-05-01 18:28:52 -0400
Civil Servants, one of the lower forms of life on this planet, like to have funds that they can put aside, to use for things like the end of the year, I dare not say Christmas in case the SJWs are reading this. Any way these extra funds go toward that big Piss Up in December.
commented 2017-05-01 18:06:01 -0400
It used to be that you’d get a discount for paying tickets early. Now they want the full amount, plus a fee. Electronic payments are the cheapest to process. But of course they need those revenue streams to keep paying the elected thieves to mishandle more of our money.
commented 2017-05-01 18:01:35 -0400
Why do we always get extra charges for things that taxes are supposed to pay for?
commented 2017-05-01 17:23:00 -0400
There’s nothing I hate more than government insulting my intelligence.
Convenience fee? Really? F**K YOU.
commented 2017-05-01 14:10:13 -0400
I wonder what Rob Ford would do.
commented 2017-05-01 13:48:34 -0400
David Menzies, if you are ticketed again, may I suggest you pay in person; with nickels. (a bucket of them)
Isn’t it odd, Barry Randall doesn’t think $300,000.00 is a lot of money!?
commented 2017-05-01 13:31:07 -0400
Governments at any level apparently can’t seem to do anything efficiently.