PPA ticketed Supreme Court Justice Scalia for parking in loading zone

For years, the Philadelphia Parking Authority has decried the notion that it was a Republican-controlled, patronage machine.

Yesterday, they may have validated that. PPA spokesman Marty O’Rourke confirmed that Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, a hardcore conservative, was ticketed Monday morning for parking in a passenger loading zone. It was first reported on the National Constitution Center’s blog “Constitution Daily.”

According to O’Rourke, two official cars used by Scalia were hit with $31 fines after sitting outside the Union League for about 50 minutes. The parking enforcement officer issued the tickets at 11:57 a.m. and 11:58 a.m., respectively, O’Rourke said.

“They’re not contesting anything and there’s been no complaint,” O’Rourke said. “They were two valid tickets that were issued and we expect they will be paid like everybody else.”

A photo posted on the blog showed a Philadelphia Police Department official business placard on the dashboard. O’Rourke said he is not sure whether the enforcement officer knew who the car belonged to, but added that officers are instructed “not to recognize placards.”

PPA has, of course, gained notoriety outside the city thanks to Parking Wars, the popular reality cable TV show that showed the everyday experiences of PPA officers.

In the past, several lawmakers have criticized the state-run agency for patronage and hiring workers with ties to prominent Republicans. In addition to issuing tickets for parking violations, PPA also administers the state’s red-light camera program.