17D-4. Application of State highway and motor vehicles laws at the academy; authority of Department of Justice to regulate traffic, etc.

(a) Except as otherwise provided in this section, all of the provisions of Chapter 20 of the General Statutes relating to the use of highways of the State and the operation of vehicles thereon are applicable to all streets, alleys, driveways, and parking lots on academy property. Nothing in this section modifies any rights of ownership or control of academy property, now or hereafter vested in the State of North Carolina ex rel., Department of Justice.

(b) The Department of Justice may by ordinance prohibit, regulate, divert, control, and limit pedestrian or vehicular traffic and the parking of vehicles and other modes of conveyance on the campus. In fixing speed limits, the Department of Justice is not subject to G.S. 20-141(f) or (g), but may fix any speed limit reasonable and safe under the circumstances as conclusively determined by the Department of Justice. The Department of Justice may not regulate traffic on streets open to the public as of right, except as specifically provided in this section.

(c) The Department of Justice may by ordinance provide for the registration of vehicles maintained or operated on the campus by any student, faculty member, or employee of the academy and may fix fees for such registration. The ordinance may make it unlawful for any person to operate an unregistered vehicle on the campus when the vehicle is required by the ordinance to be registered.

(d) The Department of Justice may by ordinance set aside parking lots on the campus for use by students, faculty, and employees of the academy and members of the general public attending schools, conferences, or meetings at the academy, visiting or making use of any academy facilities, or attending to official business with the academy. The Department of Justice may issue permits to park in these lots and may charge a fee therefor. The Department of Justice may also by ordinance make it unlawful for any person to park a vehicle in any lot or other parking facility without procuring the requisite permit and displaying it on the vehicle.

(e) The Department of Justice may by ordinance provide for the issuance of stickers, decals, permits or other indicia representing the registration of vehicles or the eligibility of vehicles to park on the campus and may by ordinance prohibit the forgery, counterfeiting, unauthorized transfer, or unauthorized use of such stickers, decals, permits or other indicia.

(f) Violation of an ordinance adopted under any portion of this section is a Class 3 misdemeanor. An ordinance may provide that certain acts prohibited thereby shall not be enforced by criminal sanctions, and in such cases a person committing any such act shall not be guilty of a misdemeanor.

(g) An ordinance adopted under this section may provide that a violation will subject the offender to a civil penalty. Penalties may be graduated according to the seriousness of the offense or the number of prior offenses committed by the person charged. The Department of Justice may establish procedure for the collection of these penalties and may enforce the penalties by civil action in the nature of debt. The Department of Justice may also provide for appropriate administrative sanctions if an offender does not pay a validly due penalty or has committed repeated offenses. Appropriate administrative sanctions include, but are not limited to, revocation of parking permits, termination of vehicle registration, and termination or suspension of enrollment in or employment by the academy.

(h) An ordinance adopted under this section may provide that any vehicle illegally parked may be removed to a storage area, in which case the person so removing the vehicle shall be deemed a legal possessor within the meaning of G.S. 44A-2(d).

(i) Evidence that a vehicle was found parked or unattended in violation of a council ordinance is prima facie evidence that the vehicle was parked by:

(1) The person holding an academy parking permit for the vehicle;

(2) If no academy parking permit has been issued for the vehicle, the person in whose name the vehicle is registered with the academy pursuant to subsection (c); or

(3) If no academy parking permit has been issued for the vehicle and the vehicle is not registered with the academy, the person in whose name it is registered with the North Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles or the corresponding agency of another state or nation.

The rule of evidence established by this subsection applies only in civil, criminal, or administrative actions or proceedings concerning violations of ordinances of the Department of Justice. G.S. 20-162.1 does not apply to such actions or proceedings.

(j) The Department of Justice shall cause to be posted appropriate notice to the public of applicable traffic and parking restrictions.

(k) All ordinances adopted under this section shall be filed in the offices of the North Carolina Attorney General and the Secretary of State. The Department of Justice shall provide for printing and distributing copies of its traffic and parking ordinances.

(l) All moneys received pursuant to this section shall be State funds as defined in G.S. 143C-1-1. (1977, c. 831, s. 2; 1979, c. 763, s. 2; 1993, c. 539, s. 309; 1994, Ex. Sess., c. 24, s. 14(c); 2006-203, s. 12.)