Boise Council backs off parking fee hike

sberg@idahostatesman.comJuly 23, 2013 

DARIN OSWALD — doswald@idahostatesman.com

— After more than an hour of public comment, most of which was negative, Boise City Council members concluded they don't have enough information to move forward with a proposal to raise metered parking rates and extend the hours they charge for parking in metered spots Downtown.

The Council pulled the proposed ordinance from its reading schedule in order to reboot the city's approach to metered parking. 

That doesn't mean parking rates won't go up, or that hours of enforcement won't be extended. The Council plans to take up the issue in the near future. It's unclear what changes, if any, will be included when a new parking fee proposal comes forward.

The proposal going into Tuesday's public hearing was to charge $1.50 for the first hour of metered parking citywide and $3.00 for the second hour. A one-year pilot program would charge for metered parking from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday in the area between Jefferson, Myrtle, 5th and 10th streets.

Councilman T.J. Thomson suggested the city use new meters and monitoring technology to study parking patterns for at least six months without raising rates or extending the time period during which metered parking costs money.

Councilwoman Lauren McLean said research has shown that increasing rates and extending enforcement will increase metered parking turnover. 

Thomson expects new meters and monitoring technology to achieve some of that turnover.

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