SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – San Francisco is done with the warnings. Parking enforcement officers will begin writing tickets for expired parking meters this Sunday, city officials said.
Some 11,000 warnings have been issued since the law to enforce parking meters on Sundays took effect with the new year, said a spokesman for the Municipal Transportation Agency.
KCBS’ Barbara Taylor Reports:
Tickets issued on Jan. 27 will carry fines ranging from $65 to $75. The MTA estimates the meters and tickets will bring in about $1.7 million annually.
Transportation officials now insist it’s not about the money. The MTA cited increased turnover in business areas as the main benefit of Sunday meters.
Store owners seem to agree.
Alissa Anderson said Sunday meters have improved foot traffic at Foggy Notion, the boutique she opened last year just off Clement Street.
“The first Sunday it happened, I noticed turnover immediately,” she said.
“Before there was someone that lived nearby that just parked their car there all day long because they could.”
Anderson and her fellow merchants can expect a lot of requests for change. Although some of San Francisco’s 29,000 parking meters accept credit cards or prepaid parking cards, most still require heaps of coins. The city also allows motorists to pay by phone.
Charging for street parking on Sundays remains a sore point for many, particularly churches concerned about worshipers getting cited during services.
Michael Pappas, director of the San Francisco Interfaith Council, hastened to add that religious organizations aren’t the only ones who want the city to give parking meters a rest on Sundays.
“I’ve been approached by people who are not even part of the religious community who are just appalled that this is happening, and they’re telling me they would like to initiate a ballot measure.”
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