PORTLAND, Maine (AP) - The Portland City Council is scheduled to consider cracking down on the misuse of disabled parking placards.

The council on Monday will consider an ordinance that would give parking enforcement officers the authority to issue $200 tickets to drivers who improperly use a disabled parking placard.

Andy Martin, the city's senior parking control officer, tells the Portland Press Herald he has seen people using the placards of dead relatives, or even changing expiration dates on placards that hang from the rear-view mirror.

The placards allow people to park in designated spaces or to park for free in metered spots.

Police Chief Michael Sauschuck says enforcing parking laws for the disabled is important to ensure Portland's most vulnerable citizens are protected, but officers are usually too busy with more serious crimes.

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