NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — City parking meters already offer a five-minute grace period. But now a city councilman wants to ease the mad dash for the meter at the end of the day by rounding up, in some cases, your final parking payment.
In the age-old struggle between man and the meter, there is now a glimmer of sunshine.
“The simple issue here is make sure that people get what they pay for,” Councilman Vincent Ignizio (R-S.I.) told CBS 2’s Steve Langford on Tuesday.
Ignizio wants to change things, so if your meter runs out, say, a couple of minutes before a 7 p.m. zone is no longer in effect, you wouldn’t have to pay for another 15-minute increment.
“You won’t have to run out of your restaurant and feed the meter for minutes that ultimately you can’t even get because it would be after the 7 o’clock hour,” Ignizio said.
To be clear, if it’s 6:45 p.m., you’d have to shell out for another 15 minutes, but at 6:46, it would get rounded up to 7 p.m., on the city’s dime. And to avoid endless arguments with your friendly local traffic agent, the muni-meter would do all the work.
“It would automatically round it up to the 7 o’clock hour. It would say 7 o’clock. It would be on your windshield,” Ignizio said.
The exception to the rule, according to the councilman, would be anyone feeding the meter for the first time just before parking rules end for the day, Langford reported.
On the streets of Bay Ridge, Brooklyn on Tuesday, Langford had no trouble finding those in favor of the councilman’s plan.
“If it’s not something that’ll take too much money away from taxes as far as implementing it city-wide then it’s a great idea,” one person said.
“It should be five minutes. Why don’t I give people 5 minutes, especially at the end of the day?” another person said.
“That would be a good idea,” another said.
“It’s better than nothing I guess,” another added.
The city councilman said he’s already got about half of his colleagues on board for a vote he expects this fall, Langford reported.
“There’s widespread support in the council, this is a pretty common sense approach. It’s not a huge fiscal note on the city, we don’t believe. It already has almost half of city council’s support, so I anticipate we’ll have a hearing and we’ll have a vote and the mayor will sign it by the end of the year,” Ignizio told 1010 WINS.
CBS 2 contacted the city seeking comment and an idea of how much this might cost. The Department of Transportation referred CBS 2 to the Department of Finance, which referred CBS 2 back to the DOT.
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