A local Bronx veteran turned to Senator Jeff Klein for assistance in his unjust and frustrating dilemma.
Stephen Bento, a long time City Island resident, lives on Horton Street, a narrow block at the southern end of the island designated with no parking to ensure safety of residents.
“To allow fire engines to enter this narrow street the neighbors petitioned the city to declare it no parking on both sides. This keeps tourists and restaurant parking from affecting 911 or fire responses,” said Bento
Many of the homes on the block have long, single-width driveways, and for those residents possessing two or more cars, the have to be parked in tandem.
“Our driveways are unusually long and not side by side like most,” said Bento. “When we pull a car out, we sometimes have to put one of them briefly on the street, to unload the car and to switch cars or for whatever minor purpose.”
This task is especially difficult for the disabled veteran who served in Vietnam in the Marine Corp.
Bento feels the block is being unfairly targeted for parking tickets during the momentary car switch.
Bento received his first summons on Friday, August 29, and the second and third shortly after on Wednesday, September 10 for parking in a no parking area.
“I won’t take this kind of treatment, not after the life experiences I have been through,” said Bento. “I never go the political route, but this needed to be exposed and something needed to be done, so I contacted Senator Klein and he resolved the problem.”
Klein took immediate action by contacting Chief Michael Scagnell, of the NYC Police Department, and asked for an investigation of the matter. Scagnelli followed up the investigation by sending Deputy Investigator Mike Pilecki to the City Island residence.
“Officer Pilecki was an exceptional gentleman and he gave me what I expected and more. I wanted the agents that smirked at me as if I couldn’t do anything about the tickets to be reprimanded. He assured me that they would be. I’m very happy,” said Bento. “This was called a common sense type ruling, the people here have no other alternative and are not abusing the parking regulations.”
It was concluded that due to the specifics behind Bento’s circumstances, he did not violate the spirit of the law and the tickets were voided.
“The role of government is to get things done, and make sure that services and regulations are executed in a productive and efficient way to the benefit of the people,” noted Klein.