Houston's first payment kiosk is set up at the Municipal Courts building on Lubbock, just west of downtown.Î¾ Gwen Goins with the Municipal Courts says it gives people a quicker option to pay uncontested traffic citations and parking tickets.Î¾ But she says there are some things people 'can't' use the kiosk to pay for.
"If you have a delinquent citation, you will not be able to use the kiosk for that.Î¾ You'll have to see the cashier for that.Î¾ Also, juveniles will not be able to use it.Î¾ If you have a juvenile case, you actually have to see a cashier for those cases as well."
Goins says city officials got the idea from the payment kiosks in Chicago — where the machines are made.Î¾ The kiosk at the Municipal Courts building is part of a 90-day trial to determine if other departments could also use them to collect everything from library fees to water bill payments.
"And we're hoping we'll have full department-wide implementation by year's end.Î¾ And then going into 2011, we'll be looking at partnering with Harris County, and maybe even retail centers for next year."
The machines cost upwards of $20,000 each.Î¾ However, Goins points out that the kiosks could pay for themselves by allowing the city to use its employees more efficiently.Î¾Î¾ The payment services provided by the kiosks can also be found on the City of Houston website or by calling 311.