Missouri State University discloses the amount of tickets issued during the past five years

Published: Aug. 13, 2019 at 9:38 PM CDT
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Last week, we told you about the state investigating a high number of parking tickets issued at Missouri State University's campus.

Whistle blowers reported to Missouri State's Attorney General's Office about ticket quotas and other unfair practices, accusing the school of using fines as a money source.

After the investigation was launched, we decided to dig a little deeper. We asked the school to go back five years to give us the number of citations they issued and how much they expected to collect. The university stated that the figures are typical yet the state said they have grounds to investigate.

"I thought maybe this was something typical for campuses," graduate student, Caleb Kiser.

He is working on getting his doctorate degree at Missouri State University in Springfield. He said he isn't surprised by the state's investigation.

We took a closer look at the number of tickets issued over the past five years. University officials provided us with a report of all the data pertaining to citations. In all close to 100,000 tickets for various violations were issued. The university expected to collect millions of dollars in fines.

In response to the volume of tickets officials sent us this statement:

"Although Missouri State University has set enrollment growth records over the last five years, the number of tickets issued has not increased significantly. In fact, total tickets issued has been fairly constant with the exception of fiscal year 2018 which had a significant drop due to problems with the electronic ticketing system."

The university said they have used three different systems in the past, indicating that there could be some inconsistencies in reporting because of that.

Kiser said he's not surprised that school officers have handed out so many citations.

"I remember several of my classmates, they got fines their first tickets. No warning, no nothing, just a fine right off the bat for something they didn't know they were doing illegally," he said.

However he is surprised that the parking laws aren't clear enough and could be confusing people.

"These are students who are at the doctorate level. I think they're pretty smart. It's kind of surprising," said Kiser.

Information the university provided to us stated that some violations were dismissed and didn't collect all of the fines issued.

It's unclear when the investigation will conclude.

University officials said they are fully cooperating.

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