Skip to Content
Morning Spew

It’s Wednesday and These Boots Were Made for Bootin’

You might have noticed a few more immobilized cars lately, and other links to start your beautiful fall day.

9:42 AM EDT on October 12, 2022

(Blazing Furby? / Hell Gate)

Cars—they’re just like us. Sometimes, they just love to accessorize. In the case of thousands of cars with delinquent ticket payments in New York City, they’re now sporting some shiny green boots. 

According to The City, the NYC Sheriff’s Office, which is in charge of the city’s “booting” program, has been quickly ramping back up its fine collection for tickets racked up by drivers during the pandemic. So far, the city has collected $80 million in delinquent payments owed by drivers after threatening to boot their cars for late payments on parking violations, speeding, and blowing red lights.

But with an estimated $310 million still owed to the city, the leniency has ended, and the city has begun to give them the boot. In August and September, more than 20,000 cars ended up with boots. The median amount that people end up doling out to pay off their tickets, and get their boots off, has ticked up from the amount it was before the pandemic—to $964, The City found. 

While the boots might raise some money for a city convinced it’s already in a fiscal crisis, they might not have that much of an impact on deterring reckless driving and drivers who flout the city’s speed and red light cameras. As Hell Gate found last month, many speeding drivers in the city simply skirt enforcement by using fake or expired license plates. The Sheriff’s Office has recently begun to crack down on some people using these fake license plates, although as Gothamist noted over the summer,  the perpetrators are often the ones supposed to be doing the policing. Amidst these efforts (or lack thereof), low-income people who need cars for work find themselves squeezed on all sides—they have to live in the least transit-served parts of the city, paying more of their income in rent than ever, with sky-high insurance premiums standing between them and a legal license plate. That doesn’t mean fake plates are the answer, but for some people, it is their reality, and more fines probably aren’t going to solve it. 

C’mon links, get linking!

Already a user?Log in

Thanks for reading!

Give us your email address to keep reading two more articles for free

See all subscription options

Stay in touch

Sign up for our free newsletter

More from Hell Gate

Greenpoint’s Restaurant Row Gets a Nifty New Japanese Sando Shop

Taku Sando puts an American twist on Japanese sandwiches.

November 29, 2023

The New Corona Plaza Market Doesn’t Seem Like Much of a Market At All

Vendors say the City's new vision for the plaza "feels like a slap in the face." Plus, more of Wednesday's links.

November 29, 2023

Queens Casino Debates Return: Will Jessica Ramos Be the Immovable Object to Steve Cohen’s Unstoppable Force?

Both Ramos and Cohen ultimately have only one weapon, and it’s the power to scuttle the other’s plans.

November 28, 2023

With NYC in a Housing Crisis, Adams Administration Takes Bold Step of Removing Bureaucratic Hurdles So Developers Can Build More Casinos

The administration doesn't want to gamble with a casino developer's shot at a NYC gambling house, and more links for your Tuesday.

November 28, 2023
See all posts