The Phoenix City Council approved changes to the parking-meter enforcement to help cover the city's budget deficit.
Parking meters will be active on nights and weekends in the near future and could cost up to $4 an hour if there's an event going on nearby.
The meters currently are in play only until 5 p.m. and aren't in action on the weekends. This has been extended to 10 p.m. every day, including holidays. The Street Transportation Department, in proposing these extensions, argued that the enforcement was consistent with how every major American city manages its meters.
The council also approved what the city's transportation department calls "demand-based pricing," which could raise or lower the hourly price depending on what's going on nearby. While all the meters are currently fixed at $1.50 an hour, they will be changed to charge as little as 50 cents per hour or as much as $4 per hour.
The Street Transportation Department originally proposed prices as high as $6 per hour, but the city's Downtown, Aviation, and Redevelopment Subcommittee recommended capping it at $4, which was what was eventually proposed to the council.
The changes were proposed as a way to bring in an extra $1 million to $2 million in revenue for the city next year. That estimate since has been reduced.
According to a report to the council from Budget and Research Director Mario Paniagua, it's estimated that the city will net $800,000 from the parking meter changes, as it's going to cost the city money to set up the variable rates on the meters.
The report also mentions potential plans to place meters at the city's mountain parks.
The city's plan is to have the extension of meter hours and days implemented by August, and the variable-pricing system implemented by October.
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