Michigan city rejects pennies for man’s $270 fine

In this May 17, 2017 photo, Brian McGonegal poses with 2700 pennies in downtown Jackson, Mich. McGonegal attempted to pay a fine at City Hall with the pennies but was denied. (Emily Mesner/Jackson Citizen Patriot via AP)

JACKSON, Mich. (AP) — A man who owes $270 for trash in his yard wants to pay with lots of pennies, but a Michigan city isn’t taking the change.

Brian McGonegal has tried to pay off his debt by making a series of $27 payments with 2,700 pennies. The Jackson city treasurer, however, has rejected the coins, telling him to put them in rolls.

“It’s not practical,” Randy Wrozek said Tuesday. “This guy would come in every time at five minutes to five — we close at five — with a big sack full of change. We’re not authorized for overtime down here.”

McGonegal said the unusual form of payment is his way of protesting the fine. He told the Jackson Citizen Patriot that he was penalized for having trash in his yard.

“I decided I would be just penny ante as they were,” said McGonegal, who accused city officials of going overboard in order to cast Jackson as an “ideal little community.”

Wrozek said the bill will be sent to Jackson County and attached as a lien on McGonegal’s property.

“It’s not our job to count his money,” the treasurer said.

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Information from: Jackson Citizen Patriot, http://www.mlive.com/jackson