Everbody likes to see the blue Gumby like meter covers that announce metered parking is suspended. Metered Parking will be suspended for the winter in Port Jeff beginning Nov 24th, 2011 till March 15, 2012. We congratulate Mayor Garant and the Village for their decision! At least for the winter, merchants, employees and our customers will not have to worry about paying for parking or getting a ticket in the village parking lots. Remember, although metered parking is suspended for the winter starting Nov, 24th , parking on the street is time limited and is enforced all year long.
Metered parking really has been a poor solution to seasonal parking problem that has exsisted in Port Jefferson for years. Merchants particularly restaurants have lost countless dollars because human nature being what it is, people don’t want to pay for parking and they don’t want to risk getting a ticket for themselves or their guests. Back in September, I saw a guy who had been in a local restaurant come out and find a ticket on his windshield. Oh not good- he was not a happy camper! The parking lot was basically empty but there was the ticket and I bet this guy and his wife will not be having dinner or shopping in Port Jeff this holiday season. Instead of telling their friends about the nice day they had in Port Jeff, this couple will will be telling their friends about getting a ticket in Port Jeff. Metered parking and tickets are bad for the stores, shops and restaurants doing business in Port Jeff.
Who really benefits from metered parking in Port Jeff? The obvious answer is the Viallage who it makes money with metered parking but the real answer is n0- one. Do the people who pay for the parking benefit? Metered parking has had no affect on seasonal parking problem and has not created any new parking spaces. Metered parking generates parking and ticket revenue for the village but at what cost. All metered parking has done is create a hole new set of expenses which can be seen in various parts of the PJ budget. As a merchant, I know metered parking has costs me thousands of dollars worth of lost sales. It really is quite simple people don’t want to pay for parking and don’t want to risk getting tickets so what do they do? They spend less time in Port Jeff or go elsewhere . Every merchant or restaurant can tell stories of patrons cutting a sale short or leaving the restaurant because they didnt want to get a ticket. Metered parking is definately not good for business. What happens to all the money the Port Jeff collects? Well that another story. For now , We all should thank Mayor Garant for getting the meters turned off for the winter. Everybody wins for a couple of months!