City of Oakland
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Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Why did the City of Oakland raise parking meter fees, increase fines and extend and parking meter enforcement hours?
A: The City of Oakland’s recent decision to raise parking meter fees and increase some fines was made in response to the most serious financial crisis ever faced by the City, and it accompanied significant cuts to vital public services, including police, libraries, parks and maintenance. Although City leaders recognize that this decision is unpopular and difficult for many residents, it was an unfortunate necessity given the magnitude of Oakland’s budget deficit.

Q: What is the scope of the City’s financial crisis?
A: As a result of the unprecedented economic downturn plaguing the nation and the world, the City of Oakland—like many other cities and the State of California—recently faced its worst financial crisis ever. The economic recession, the implosion of the national and regional housing market and an associated steep downward spiral in consumer spending led to a $51 million drop in revenues and an overall deficit of $83 million for fiscal years 2009-2010 and 2010-2011.

In fact, this was the third deficit the City addressed in the past 12 months. In October 2008, the City closed a $42 million hole, and in June 2008 it closed a $19 million shortfall. Cumulatively, over the past year the City has addressed a $144 million budget deficit and eliminated more than 350 jobs.

Q: Did the City of Oakland explore other options to address the budget deficit before raising parking meter rates and fines?
A: Yes. Since June of last year, many budget-balancing measures have been employed to address the City’s massive deficits. The City cut employee pay by 10 percent, significantly curtailed travel and other nonessential expenses and made huge reductions to services such as park maintenance, tree planting, street maintenance, litter enforcement, library hours, and custodial and maintenance services in public facilities.

Still, these service and payroll reductions were inadequate to close the deficit without finding ways to generate more revenue.

Q: How much revenue is generated by parking meters and parking fines?
A: Last year, the City collected nearly $10 million from parking meters/kiosks and $22 million in parking fines.

Q: How much revenue will be generated as a result of these recent changes?
A: The extension of parking meter hours and fine increases recently enacted are projected to generate an additional $4.5 million in revenue. Without this additional revenue, the City would be forced to further reduce public services such as libraries, senior centers or police. To put this in perspective, $4.5 million in parking-related revenue is equivalent to the cost of paying 18 police officers.

Q: What are the new hours of operation for parking meters??
A: Monday through Saturday, 8:00am to 6:00pm.

Q: How much do Oakland parking meters cost?
A: The current rate is $2.00 per hour. This is an increase of 50 cents per hour over the old rate, effective July 1, 2009.

Q: When did parking fines go up?
A: The Oakland Municipal Code (OMC §10.48) governing parking fines was last revised on July 7, 2009.

Q: Are there parking restrictions in my neighborhood?
A: Parking restrictions apply to almost every neighborhood. It is important that you familiarize yourself with all of the rules that apply to your area. For details on Oakland’s parking rules, you can refer to the Oakland Municipal Code, Section 10, “Vehicles and Traffic,” which is available online at

Q: Where can I find a complete list of violations and fines?
A: The easiest place to access the information is online at: or you may call the Parking Assistance Center at (800)500-6484..

Q: Who sets the parking rates and fines amounts?
A: Parking Fines are established by City Ordinance through a vote of the City Council and become part of the Oakland Municipal Code.

Q: Why are the fines so high? They are not this high in other Bay Area cities.
A: In evaluating the parking fines in Oakland, staff conducted a survey of parking fines being charged by other Bay Area cities, and other cities of similar size in California. Oakland’s fines are consistent with or comparable to fines assessed in other cities.

Q: What do I do if a parking meter is broken?
A: Make a note of the meter number and call (510) 615-5566 to report the broken meter.

Q: Who can I contact if I have questions?
A: You may call the Parking Citation Assistance Center at (800)500-6484 or visit in person. The Center is open Monday through Friday from 9 am to 4:30 pm and is located on the 6th floor at 250 Frank Ogawa Plaza (next to City Hall).

Q: Where do I pay my tickets?
A: You can pay your tickets by mail, by phone, online, or in person. The Parking Assistance Center is located on the 6th floor at 250 Frank Ogawa Plaza (next to City Hall) in downtown Oakland.

Q: Can I pay online?
A: Yes, you can pay online at:

Q: My parking citation was overpaid. How do I request a refund?
A: Complete a Refund Request Form which explains what documentation is required and how to submit the form.

Q: How can I contest my citation(s) & what are the procedures?
A: Citation must be contested within 21 calendar days from the date of issuance. If you wish to contest your citation, you can do it in the following ways:

Online - You may submit your Contest Online and you will be able to upload 3 documents that provide evidence to support your written testimony. If your citation was issued today, please wait 48 hours for the citation to be uploaded into the system. If your citation was handwritten, please submit your contest using one of the other methods mentioned (e.g. in person, by phone or by mail).

In person – You need to fill out the Contest Form or bring a letter of explanation for contesting your citation. Please include the following information on your letter.
  1. Attach the original Citation
  2. Your Name, Address & Telephone Number

Phone – You can contact us at 1-800-500-6484 and give us the above information outlined above, and fax us the required documents at (510) 986-2699.

Mail – Send us all the required items listed above.

Once the Parking Citation Assistance Center (PCAC) does all its investigation, you will be notified by mail. If the citation is upheld you will have 21 days to pay your citation or request an administrative hearing. You must pay a deposit equal to the fine amount with your request for a hearing. If you cannot afford the deposit, please contact us at 1(800)500-6484 prior to the due date to request a hearing deposit fee waiver.

Q: What are the Parking Division’s annual operational statistics? 
A: Annual Parking Report FY 13-14.
A: Annual Parking Report FY 12-13.
A: Annual Parking Report FY 11-12.
A: Annual Parking Report FY 10-11.
Q: Did you go to the Parking Citation Assistance Center in person and request language assistance? If so, would you please fill out this survey? 
A: Your Survey Web Link: Click here to take the survey.
Q: ¿Fue usted al Centro de Asistencia de Multas por Estacionamiento (Parking Citation Assistance Center) a pagar una multa? Si fue así, favor de llenar esta encuesta.  
A: Your Survey Web Link: Click here to take the survey.
Q: 你是否有去過屋崙(奧克蘭)市政府泊車罰單協助中心支付停車罰單?如果是,請填寫此語言服務問卷調查 
A: Your Survey Web Link: Click here to take the survey.






Accounting ITD Home Parking Personnel Revenue