FORT MYERS, Fla. - Fort Myers man is finding himself in a parking predicament. He got a ticket in the mail from New york City, some 1,300 miles away. According to the city's Department of Finance, Jeff Cooner's car failed to display a receipt in a Queens parking lot on December 20th. There's just one problem. "I've not been in New York City for 10 or 12 years and my vehicles that this company owned has never been in the state of New York," Cooner said. "So, there is no way it was my vehicle."
So far, fixing it has been a bumpy road. "You just go through this endless loop of talking to support staff," Cooner said. "I have been unable to talk to an actual employee of the City of New York that works for the Department of Finance."
Some have suggested he just pay the 35 bucks and make it go away. But Jeff, a businessman, doesn't see it that way. He wants to know how it happened. "My choices are to pay it, or have a hearing and I am not going to have a hearing," Cooner said. "All that does is create more information which shouldn't have to be in their public record. If they go on record that it was our error, then I don't have to worry about a counterfeit plate."
Cooner worries he's just one of many stuck in this same situation. So, he wrote a letter to the Commissioner of the Department of Finance, the Mayor and other city leaders asking for help. He's also taking his ticket troubles to Facebook, chronicling, day by day, this "David versus Goliath" story. "I am committed that this will go away," Cooner said. "For me, this is just a project and I will see it through like any other project we do."
Cooner wants three things out of all of this: for the ticket to be retracted, for this incident to be removed from public record and, for a letter of apology. We contacted the Department of Finance about the issue. But, we've heard nothing back.
If you want check out Jeff's page, you can find it at: https://www.facebook.com/NYCticketError2013