Collections of fines and penalties are down in the first six months of Philadelphia’s fiscal year.
A report by Philadelphia City Controller Alan Butkovitz said there is an 11-percent drop compared to the same time a year ago in collecting fines and penalties in the city.
“We don’t know in detail what the problem is, we just know they are down by 11 percent from $7.4 million to $6.6 million,” Butkovitz said. “This is an alert that will cause us to take a closer look.”
Butkovitz said a deeper audit will be done to see if this is a problem in collecting fines or if just fewer are being issued. He said some areas are bringing in more money, such as fines for false alarms.
“We would note the one area that we focused on microscopically – the burglar alarms, which we criticized in our previous audit of the adjudication bureau – those collections are up 12 percent, so we’re hoping as we draw specific attention to those areas that the departments are focusing in and improving their collection system,” he said.
Butkovitz said it will take several months to get a sharper picture of the situation.