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How Many Parking Lots Are in L.A.? If the City Knew, They Could Collect Millions in Taxes

Photo by j.r.mchale via the LAist Featured Photos pool on Flickr
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It's hard to collect taxes from parking lots if you don't know how many parking lots there are. That's pretty much the problem that's got L.A. City Controller Wendy Greuel worried, and wondering if there isn't millions in uncollected debt that could help fill our coffers.

Greuel's office issued a release Thursday indicating that L.A.'s Office of Finance was unable to prove they have an "accurate inventory" of parking lots in the city, which means the city can't tell if they are getting all of the Parking Occupancy Tax money it is owed.

Apparently, there are some major snags in how parking lots are registered and tracked. When they compared notes with the State Franchise Tax Board, they found four parking lots not registered with the city. There's also the problem of parking lots with multiple addresses registering with different addresses in different years, as well as lots that are simply not accounted for. Greuel and her team are concerned that there are not enough contractors employed in L.A. to monitor parking lots and ensure all the money comes in as owed.

With parking lot tax revenue bringing an estimated $85 million to the City annually, missing a few could mean missing millions. Greuel is asking the Office of Finance to step up their efforts and tidy up their inventory so L.A. can get their much-needed bucks.

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Greuel's office points out that in the past three years, the Controller's numerous audits have "uncovered more than $130 million that the City has lost to waste, fraud, and abuse."