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Development & Transportation

Pittsburgh Parking Authority Snapping License Pics

The Pittsburgh Parking Authority is using automated mobile surveillance cameras to snap pictures of up to 200,000 license plates a month so it can find scofflaws who repeatedly flout parking laws.

Those cars can be "booted" — that is, fit with a metal locking device that attaches to a wheel that cannot be removed until overdue fines are paid.

But the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports a small fraction of 1 percent of the cars being photographed are ever booted, raising privacy concerns among some residents and the American Civil Liberties Union.

The technology was used to make more than 144,000 license photograph scans in August, finding 162 cars with enough overdue fines to require a boot.

The authority says nearly 3,900 vehicles are targeted for boots — provided they can be found.

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