Paid parking drawbacks


The use of parking meters to generate revenue is an interesting concept. The use of parking meters to discourage people who work in the village from parking on Main Street is curious. They are really two separate issues.

While I don’t know the exact proposed map of where the original meters would be installed, there are a few ramifications that might be considered.

For meters to be totally cost effective most of them need to be in almost constant use during operational hours. This usually happens when they are used by commuters or there are large office buildings which require the clients to make multi-hour visits.

Meters have to be maintained. Monies have to be collected and broken meters have to be repaired. Then there’s the concern of issuing tickets. Someone will have to be hired to take care of all of these issues. Do you know the story of the meter reader who helped himself to a portion of the quarters? It was unmarked, untraceable cash. It cost money to resolve this case in court.

On Main Street how will this affect seniors going to lunch at the senior center? Or people going to meetings at churches during the week? What of those who need to run into the Post Office to mail a package? Or someone who has banking issues? Many people spend less than 15 minutes to get beverages, health foods, hardware, takeout, or cards. Will delivery trucks be required to feed the meters? After all, they will be taking up valuable spaces.

If the meters are placed along Main Street only, those who normally park there will move to Second Avenue or Elm Street. Will the meters be extended to those streets? How will those using the benefits of the library feel about paying for parking? Will the meters be extended to municipal lots? How will that affect snow removal around those meters (even if they’re not in use at that time?)

One borough developed a “Parking Authority.” Who will handle these concerns in Delhi?

And then there’s the response of shoppers. Why not go to a store, hair salon, farmer’s market in a surrounding town where the parking is free? One parking ticket may convince them that would be cost effective.

Marie Van Valkenburgh