MOUNT VERNON, N.Y. – The Mount Vernon City Council is considering buying new single-space parking meters that would help to produce more revenue for the city.
Deputy Parking Commissioner H. Gaylord Worrell recommended putting most of the 1,200 meters he is asking the City Council to buy on the streets. The total cost would be $177,600.
Worrell said income from parking meters would double to $1.7 million if the city implemented the new meters by March.
Worrell said the city would have to charge at least $1 per hour to generate a profit from the new meters. Currently, most meters in the city cost 25 to 50 cents per hour. Similar municipalities such as New Rochelle, White Plains and Yonkers charge a dollar per hour on most of their meters.
“Some parking machines in the city shut down when it rains, so there is no way of knowing how much we lose,” Worrell said. “We have over 1,200 meters in the city that are over 20 years old. The problem in the city is that many meters have become obsolete.”
Worrell said it would cost a little more than $5,000 monthly over three years to operate the parking meters. He said this is a short-range plan that is more of a bandage to aid revenue next year.
Council member Deborah Reynolds questioned using a short-term solution, saying the city would have to spend more money in the future. Reynolds suggested purchasing municipal meters, but Worrell said the city doesn’t have the money for them right now.
“With municipal meters you could use a credit card and any denomination of coins,” Reynolds said. “Wouldn’t it make sense to buy them so we don’t have to spend more money later?”
Worrell said municipal meters cost around $9,000 apiece, adding that four of them would have to be placed on Gramatan Avenue alone, which the city cannot afford.
“I don’t think we have the money for them,” Worrell said. “If we were to purchase the single-space meters, it should double our revenue and bring us up to speed with other municipalities.”