It’s unclear if the city breaks even on the cost of code enforcement.
Few things ruin a day in Philadelphia quite like a ticket.
Sure, the state-controlled Philadelphia Parking Authority receives the most ire when it comes to bureaucratic wrist slaps. But City Hall also runs its own, lesser-known ticketing system that has gradually become a $5 million-a-year revenue stream.
Welcome to the world of code violation notices, or CVNs.
Ranging from $25 to $250, these tickets are issued for a bewildering array of acts (and non-acts) that run afoul of city code. Philadelphia wrote more than 1.1 million code violation notices between 2008 and 2018, according to a Billy Penn analysis of city data.
The analysis found nearly 300 different offenses that yielded a fine over the last decade, which read like a description of a long walk through Philly. The ticket-book includes everything from honest mistakes (putting the trash out early) to common grievances (dog crap on the sidewalk) to previously criminalized activities (marijuana possession).
Other tickets appear