Mayor wants to double parking meter fees
Mayor Steve Noble has proposed doubling on-street parking meter fees.
The proposal is part of a parking strategy by the mayor that also includes installing meters or pay stations in municipal lots where parking currently is free.
In his most recent weekly Mayor’s Message, Noble called for the cost of metered parking to rise from 50 cents an hour to $1. He expects the increase to take effect Jan. 1.
Noble said he will discuss his plan with city lawmakers on Nov. 21.
“The price on the meters have not been adjusted since 2007, when they were installed,” Noble said in an email. “We researched metered rates in other communities and used that data as part of the preparation of our proposed fee.
He noted hourly parking meter fees of $1 in Poughkeepsie, $1.25 in Syracuse and $1.50 in Ithaca.
Noble said the fines for parking meter violations also would increase under his plan. The base fine would rise from $20 to $25; the fine after 15 days would rise from $40 to $50.
“As I expected, the response to my proposal to institute paid parking in our municipal lots and to increase fees for on-street parking has been mixed,” Noble said.
“I have heard from some individuals and businesses that they much prefer userbased fees rather than increased taxes,” he said, but “others have responded that this will place a burden on our residents and employees working in our business districts.”
Noble said his proposals are based on the city’s need to generate revenue.
“The city is taking a proactive approach to lower its expenses, but the vast majority of city spending is made up of mandated costs that are not amendable,” the proposal states. “With insurance costs alone projected to increase by $700,000, the city must either raise taxes or raise revenues.”
Noble wants to have parking payment kiosks in some or all of the roughly halfdozen municipal lots in Kingston, and five companies that provide them have submitted proposals to City Hall.
Kingston intends to buy or lease about 15 of the pay stations.
Noble has said the kiosk system would be beneficial to users.
“Users of our parking lots will be able to easily pay by cash or credit card at kiosks, with short-term and discounted long-term options available,” he said.
Noble’s 2017 city budget includes about $175,000 in revenue from the parking lots.
Noble has said the city also might activate a system that would make it easier to pay at the existing onstreet meters.
“Our on-street meters will also soon allow payment by smartphone,” he said. “Users will be able to receive alerts when their time is running out and will be able to add additional time through an easy-to-use app on their phones.”
A parking meter stands on Wall Street in Uptown Kingston on Wednesday.