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Late fees waived for parking tickets, drivers given clean slate in South Bend

SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- It's a day of forgiveness, and a day drivers get a free pass on all those parking fines in South Bend. Friday marks a historic day in the city: the first ever "Amnesty Day."

It's an opportunity for drivers to clear themselves of the consequences that come along with not paying a parking ticket. 

It's a sight no one likes to see.

A person in a red shirt, typing furiously away on an electronic pin pad, and neatly tucking a ticket on your windshield. 

"Most of these cars are not parked right. I had to park over there because there was no spot for me to park over here," says Crystal Bammerlin, who says she hates parking in downtown South Bend. 

Parking tickets in the city are hard to avoid, even for South Bend City Clerk Kareemah Fowler. 

"Yes, I have gotten a parking ticket before. I've been on both sides of the fence," she says.

That's why she was inspired to create South Bend's first "Amnesty Day." 

"[We're] sending the message that we here in the city of South Bend want to be a more friendlier and gentler city," explains Fowler. "We want to help people in an all encompassing way. So, we're encouraging you to come down here, clean the slate, pay your parking tickets and avoid potential litigation.

Drivers like Bammerlin say parking in downtown is difficult, and are happy that the city is finally doing something to help. 

"It's a good thing they're having this Amnesty Day," says Bammerlin.

"If I was a resident of downtown South Bend and have gotten tickets, I'd be super excited," adds Fowler. 

Fowler says that people should bring their license plate number along with them, when they go to pay their parking tickets. 

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