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Jun 28, 2016 9:22 AM

Concord parking fees, fines proposed for major increase

CONCORD - City officials are considering a major increase to parking fees, hours and fines in an effort to raise more revenue.

The parking fund was designed to sustain itself without taxpayer dollars but more money is needed to prevent the system from going bankrupt, according to the Concord Monitor. Matt Walsh, special projects director for the city, says the proposed fee structure is also intended to encourage more drivers to use the city's parking garages.

Based on a recent study's recommendations, Walsh proposed the following changes to a city parking committee on Monday:

  • On Main Street, rates would increase from 75 cents an hour to $1.75/hour. The time limit would double to four hours.
  • Side streets would increase to $1.25 an hour. The closest meters to Main Street would have a four-hour limit, the rest would have no time limit.
  • Garages and surface lots would charge 75 cents an hour, with no time limit enforced.
  • Additional metered parking would be installed south to Perley Street.
  • The hours when people would have to pay would be expanded from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. to 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and payment would be required on Saturdays, not just Monday through Friday.
  • Failure to pay the parking fees would also become more expensive. An expired meter would cost $25, up from $10. Parking over the lines would trigger a $25 ticket, also an increase from $5.

The full study and recommendations will be available online Wednesday. These proposals will be evaluated by a parking committee, which will eventually make recommendation to the city council. At least one public hearing would be require before the council votes on any changes.

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