A modest, metered parking proposal

Dan Nelson - Parking Meter

I guess it was just a matter of time before our parking meters turned on us and became agents of the government.

You see, the City of Boise looks at things differently than you and I.

When they see a bunch of downtown metered street parking spaces full for hour after hour after hour, that means they aren’t charging enough money for you to park there.

When they see people enjoying $1-an-hour parking until 6 p.m. and then parking FOR FREE after 6 p.m. that really sets them off.

When they see people taking advantage of this rate and indiscriminately parking on downtown streets until they feel like leaving, the city feels like they aren’t doing their jobs correctly.

Apparently there are businesses that complain about the inordinate habits of intolerable parking pragmatists. So, the city is thinking about charging you $1.50 for the first hour and then $3 for the second hour until you get the message that it is time to move on.

How do you like that, Joe Parking Opportunist?

The city wants you free-wheeling-free-parking-after-6 lowlifes to move on or get a stall — in one of their garages.

Those innocent looking parking meters are being turned against us. Once friendly and good-natured sentinels accepting our two-bit offerings with a smile, they soon may be programmed to bully us to hit the road.

OK, so it looks like we could be headed for a new era of behavior-modification-by-meter.

I don’t get why the city or any other government agencies stops at the threshold of parking meters to get what they want.

Some of these new meters — the high tech ones that take credit cards and may be able to conduct business with your smart phone someday — cost upwards of $800.

Why does the city want to bother with all of that? Coins, meters, meter-readers — who needs it?

For just a couple hundred bucks we could all be outfitted with those invisible fence dog collars. If you’re at the pub having a pint and your hour is about up the city can send you a little j-o-l-t reminder. Clogging up commerce in downtown? The city needs only to buzz you into submission until you move your ride.

Problem solved.

If you don’t like my modest metered proposal or the city’s idea you could go to the public hearing on this matter at high noon on July 23 at City Hall, 150 N. Capitol Blvd. in Boise.

And remember, parking for the first 20 minutes is free!


Posted in Hello Idaho