The Troy, N.Y. city council approved a resolution to help recover $1.5 million in delinquent parking tickets and other billings by hiring collection agency Penn Credit. The approval of the resolution moves the city one step closer to actually executing a contract.

City Comptroller Joe Mazzariello said that the city issued a request for proposals in April but the idea to partner with a collection agency has been under consideration for about a year.

Penn Cedit came in as the lowest qualified bidder. Mazzareillo said Penn Credit would not only bill violators for the outstanding fines, but also tack on its own fee, which is how it would get paid for the work. It would also keep track of additional penalties if bills were not paid on time.

City officials said that with the campuses of Russell Sage College, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and Hudson Valley Community College all found within the city, being able to bill people who live out of state, but reside in Troy for part of the year, was difficult.

The city previously has used billing companies to try and collect money but Mazzariello said they took a more passive approach by only sending out one or two letters then leaving it up to the city to actually collect the money.

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