January 19 2016
Burlington Police Officer to Fight Handicap Parking Abuses at State Level
A Burlington Police Officer who led the way in Operation Access, the department’s effort to crack down on illegal handicap parking, will now be working on that push at the state level.
Police Chief Michael Kent said in a statement he is pleased to announce that Officer William Trelegan has joined the Massachusetts Disability Placard Abuse Task Force to prevent the misuse of placards statewide and to ensure that handicap spots are available to those in need.
Officer Trelegan was invited to join the task force as a result of successfully leading the enforcement of illegal handicap parking and parking placard abuse in Burlington, the release states.
Police have also partnered with the Burlington Disability Access Commission to ensure drivers are obeying the handicap laws when in parking lots and on the streets. Those who are caught abusing a placard or who are in a handicap spot illegally,will be ticketed, may lose their license and could have their vehicle towed.
Other forms of handicap parking abuse includes:
• Using someone else's disability placard or handicap plate
• Using an expired placard
• Using a placard or plate that was issued based on incorrect or outdated information
• Making a counterfeit placard or altering an existing one
"It is inexcusable to illegally use a handicap parking placard or plate," Chief Kent said. "You take away a spot for those who are most in need. This time of year, with the inclement weather, do not be tempted to park in spaces that you are not entitled to for convenience. We will be heavily enforcing these regulations."
According to the release, the task force began in 2013 in response to the findings from the Office of the Inspector General's report: The Abuse of Disabled Persons Parking Placards. Its mission is to reduce statewide misuse of placards so that disability parking spaces are always available for those who need them.
Registrar Erin Deveney of the RMV leads the task force. Other members include Inspector General Glenn Cunha, Director David D'Arcangelo of the Massachusetts Office on Disability, State Police Lieutenant Colonel Edward Amodeo, Boston Commissioner Kristen McCosh of the Boston Commission for Persons with Disabilities, as well as other state and city leaders.
If you know of or witness someone abusing a handicap placard or plate, call the Burlington Police Department at or visit the RMV online to fill out a form.