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New Oxford Parking laws to go into effect.

The city of Oxford is enforcing new parking laws on the square that go into effect today. Parking in premium spots on the Square is now limited to two hours from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. after drivers were previously allowed to park up to two hours from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday.

University of Mississippi students are no longer the only ones who have to worry about receiving parking tickets during the week. The city of Oxford is now enforcing strict parking laws that go into effect today.

Parking in premium spots on the Square is now limited to two hours from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Previous parking rules in Oxford allowed drivers to park up to two hours from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Standard Parking, the company the city has hired to enforce the new parking laws, will begin issuing parking tickets today for vehicles parked in premium spots on the Square. There are unrestricted, free lots around the Square that visitors can park in without receiving a ticket.

Oxford city planner Tim Akers told The Oxford Eagle that the first ticket is free, and violators will receive letters that explain future fines for tickets received on the Square. The second violation is $10, the third is $25 and the fourth is $50. The fines will increase $10 each month the fines are not paid. The fifth ticket will prompt officials to place a boot on the vehicle. Removal of the boot will cost $75.

Fines for parking in loading zones will be $100, and unlawful parking in handicapped parking spots will be $200.

“I don’t really think that this is what the majority of Oxford residents want,” Oxford resident Tommy Burnette said. “I guess they think it’s the best thing to do for the city, but I can imagine there will be a lot of uproar from a lot of people over this.”

Vehicles parked in premium spots on the Square will be monitored by a mounted camera on a vehicle that constantly moves around the Square. The camera uses license plate recognition software that records vehicles’ license plates and how long those vehicles have been parked on the Square.

Standard Parking’s recognition software will know if a driver moves a vehicle to a different parking spot, and a ticket will be given if such action is taken. A vehicle can be moved off the Square for two hours and then return without being ticketed.

“First, I have to worry about finding a spot and not being ticketed on campus when I go to class,” senior business major Ashley Cline said. “Then when I go to work (on the Square), I have to worry about parking somewhere that doesn’t get me a ticket, too. I am pretty much speechless.”