The Hanford Police Department is looking to spread some holiday cheer, give back to the community and cut motorists a break — all in one go.

According to Hanford Police Chief Parker Sever, the Department will kick off its “Food for Fines” program after Thanksgiving. During the month of December, anyone with a City of Hanford parking ticket that brings approximately half the ticket’s worth in canned food or dog food will have their tickets dismissed.

“It’s a way for us to give a little bit of a break during the holidays for the parking,” Sever said. “But also get some food and stuff back for our furry friends and also for — we also give to the Salvation Army, or some other worthy cause.”

Since the program is being done with holiday cheer, Sever stressed that the program will be done based on a judgement call as to whether or not the food provided is roughly half the cost of the ticket. The Hanford Police Department asks only that the food provided is unopened and in its original packaging.

“And we don’t sit there and add it on a calculator — it’s just roughly half,” Sever said. “We’re not going to send someone away saying, ‘one more can, then you’re good.’ That’s not going to happen. There’s a little trust involved. We trust that they feel good with what they’re donating.”

Sever also stressed that Food for Fines does not apply to speeding or other traffic tickets, only for parking concerning the City of Hanford. 

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