Dumping mounds of snow into a parking space reserved for a person with disabilities will soon lead to hundreds of dollars in fines under a measure signed this week by Gov. Kathy Hochul.
The new law is meant to prevent snow from being dumped into parking spaces set aside for people with disabilties and was part of a package of bills approved by Hochul during the 32nd anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act.
A first time offense of plowing or dumping snow into one of the parking spaces can lead to a fine of $125, but local governments can set fines as high as $250. A subsequent offense can lead to a fine of up to $450.
"The ADA put forth sweeping protections for those who are physically disabled, among which was the mandatory installation of handicapped parking spaces. However, if these spaces are blocked or otherwise restricted, they serve no useful purpose to those who rely on them," said state Sen. John Brooks, who sponsored the bill with Assemblywoman Judy Griffin. "I am proud to have sponsored a bill, signed last week by Gov. Hochul that serves to deter businesses, municipalities, and individuals from dumping or storing snow on the limited number of handicapped parking spaces available through the use of increased fines."
The measure is set to take effect in three months.