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Mentor Police Department switching to digital ticketing

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By Betsy Scott, The News-Herald

Mentor police officers soon won’t have to write traffic tickets anymore.

That’s because the department is switching to electronic ticketing. City Council recently authorized spending $63,871 to implement the digiTicket system, offered by Tulsa, Oklahoma-based Saltus Technologies. The annual maintenance fee will be $5,790.

The cost includes a magnetic strip card reader and a thermal printer, to be installed in each marked car. The department has 25 such vehicles.

In addition to the manpower savings with an electronic ticketing system, the city will save about $2,500 annually on the cost of paper citations and warnings, said Capt. Andrew B. Lehner, administrative commander.

“This electronic ticketing system will enable officers in the field to quickly and accurately gather information from people on traffic stops and other enforcement encounters,” he said. “Necessary information will be collected electronically, in most cases, by means of a driver’s license scanner. The officer will be able to print a complete, legible and accurate citation or warning for traffic or select misdemeanor violations.”

There are other benefits as well, Chief Kevin Knight said.

“The electronic ticketing helps the department by speeding up the time an officer will spend on a traffic stop and get back into service quicker,” he said. “The current hand-written carbonless copies are difficult to read sometimes, so the legibility will be greatly improved.

“The information will automatically be entered into the electronic record management system, eliminating the need for a clerk to manually enter all the information from traffic tickets, written warnings, parking citations and misdemeanor summonses. This will also help eliminate the chance of human error when entering the information manually. The court will also be able to retrieve any of these electronically in a digital format without having to have the copies delivered to the court.”

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