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Free Holiday Parking is Now Underway

Parking meters in Mill Valley will be free from Thanksgiving through New Year's Day.

Free holiday parking is now in effect!

The Council Council approved the Mill Valley tradition that allows residents and visitors to park for free up to the maximum time allowed on the meter during the holiday shopping season.

The temporary suspension of meters runs from Friday, Novermber 23 through Monday, December 31, with the Thanksgiving and New Year's Day holidays on each end. 

Time restrictions and other parking violations will still be enforced by the city. Mill Valley also installed 30 new meters downtown that take credit cards as part of a three-month trial program to collect data on parking habits. The meters will be reprogramed to reflect the 38 days of free parking, which won't count toward the timeframe of the program. The ability to pay with credit cards will extend well into January 2013.

The free parking is considered "a gesture of goodwill between merchants, residents and the city during the holiday shopping time," and costs the city a total of $50,863. It includes a breakdown of $34,808 in lost meter revenue, $15,820 in a loss of revenue from citations for expired meters, and $235 for staff to instal and remove decals.

In a letter to the City Council, Mill Valley Chamber of Commerce Daniel Escalzo requested that the tradition continue.

"This is a great opportunity to bring more business to Mill Valley and encourage shopping with the ease of free parking for visitors and residents," he said.

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