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October 05, 2013


The downtown business owners that I know DID NOT read the fine print. They were opposed to meters and supported that campaign, but not eliminating two hours/creating unlimited free parking.

The vast majority of part time employees downtown park on the street, clogging up the free parking. It's extremely difficult to stop them. Sit outside the convention center, Bentleys, all the coffee shops downtown, the restaurants...etc, and you will see employees pull up and park right across the street and go to work. I see it daily.

Business owners get upset about this, but are unwilling to pay for parking for employees and it is impractical to think that someone making $350 a month is going to spend $75 a month on parking themselves.

This is a major problem. Parking is scarce at high volume times. I see it every single day.

So solving the employee parking issue is critical and cannot be overlooked as part of this process.

Blanket elimination of parking restrictions would be a huge mistake. Though it would save the employees from having to move their car every 2 hours...

Don't get me wrong, employees of downtown businesses are very important. They are a big part of the downtown economy. They spend a lot of money - so we have to take care of them not criminalize them.

Paul, have you read the "fine print" in the initiative yourself? Check it out.

The initiative petition recognizes that employees using onstreet parking is a big problem. It prohibits this. And the Stop Parking Meters Downtown web site recommends that the City of Salem start enforcing the ban on onstreet employee parking.

I find it hard to believe that the 63 businesses which had the petitions on hand for customers to sign never read, or were familiar with, what they were promoting. You may be right, though, that some thought the only goal was to stop parking meters from being installed.

Personally, I like the idea of doing away with the two hour limit. Again the main reason for this seems to be to stop employees from parking onstreet for long periods of time. If the City started to enforce a ban on employee parking, this would free up spaces for customers/visitors.

Fairly frequently I have to move my car when I'm downtown for more than two hours. Not exactly welcoming to people going to downtown businesses when the message is, "stay for two hours, but no more."

I can only speak about the five business owners I'm close with. The sole goal was stopping meters. No thought of unlimited free parking, which everyone knows will be heavily abused by the part time employees downtown.

Sure its great to talk about enforcing the employee parking ban, in theory, but ask anyone that is involved, it is extremely difficult. Back the mid 90's I worked and parked downtown and the parking police had to basically stalk me for three days to establish that I worked and parked downtown. Took a lot of manpower and you aren't exactly required to obey the parking police when they ask you to stop. I just got in my car and drove away from them twice.

Nobody fills out those rosters they send to business owners.

I think there should be some basic time limits. But again that's difficult to manage. I got a cup of coffee at 10 am which took five minutes, came back three hours later to buy a book at the book bin and got a ticket after being there ten minutes. They said was there for three hours....I guess you can't visit the same block twice in one day.

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