A new Massachusetts state law calls for tougher penalties against people who fraudulently use handicapped parking placards.
Republican Gov. Charlie Baker marked the signing of the bill at a Statehouse ceremony on Monday, saying disabled parking spots should be reserved only for the state's most vulnerable citizens.
The new law imposes fines of up to $1,000 for using a handicapped license plate or placard that was issued to a person who has since died. It also increases the period of driver's license suspension for anyone who wrongfully displays a handicapped plate or placard.
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It also grants the Registry of Motor Vehicles greater authority to review applications for handicapped parking access.
The legislation was filed after a 2016 state inspector general report that found rampant abuse of access to handicapped parking.