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Sound Off: What Do You Think About the New Parking Meters Resetting When You Leave?

Five of the 30 new parking meters have sensors that go back to zero once you drive off - even if you haven't used all of your time. What do you think?

Ah, the pleasant surprise of pulling into a parking space and realizing there's money left on the meter. But that's no longer the case with five of the 30 new parking meters installed on Throckmorton around Depot Plaza. 

The meters, which accept credit and debit cards, were installed in September as part of a three-month pilot program to collect data that will help determine future parking needs downtown. But part of that data collection means five of them are equipped with sensors that reset once you leave - even if you haven't used all of your time.

"When you drive off, they do go back to zero," said Mill Valley Police Lt. Ken Dunkel. In addition to collecting the data, its an effective way to increase revenue, he said.

Although the meters are part of a three-month trial program, they'll be there well into January. The free parking policy from Thanksgiving to Christmas will extend their use into 2013.

A recently formed ad hoc committee will use the data collected to review downtown parking as a whole. Dunkel said the city may also look at pay-by-smart-phone meters, and is taking into consideration what neighboring cities and towns are doing. Mill Valley has a total of 396 parking meters downtown.

What do you think of the new meters? Do you agree with them resetting? Like the new credit card option? Tell us in the comments.

And email info@cityofmillvalley.org or call 415.389.4100 to share your thoughts with the Mill Valley Police Department.

Geoff Flint October 12, 2012 at 10:34 PM
Do we really need parking meters in a small town like Mill Valley?!?!? The revenue collected probably just goes to pay the meter maids and not much more. It hurts downtown merchants which in turn hurts the city. I think that it results in a net loss for the city. I vote to get rid of them!
Rico October 13, 2012 at 12:05 AM
I agree Geoff.
Lou Judson October 14, 2012 at 05:52 PM
<sigh> Thanks Marilyn. I grew up in MV from 1957 to 71. My parents divorced and mother moved to Novato with new husband, and i was drafted and went away. When I came back a few years later, I could only afford a 10x10 rental room in MV! Now I have inherited my mom's house in Novato and only visit MV ocasionally. I miss it very much! Just too damn expensive and getting more so - a communter town mostly now.
Lou Judson October 14, 2012 at 05:55 PM
Rita meter maid probably can't afford to live in MV and is "just doing her job" sticking it to locals and tourists alike. She is technically correct but heartless and vindictive. Boo!
Lou Judson October 14, 2012 at 05:58 PM
I could see one good use of the automated meters - if they only charged you for the time you used, so you didn't need ot punch in say an hour or whatever... than if you stayed over an hour they coulkd write you a ticket and email it to you! Voila, no meter maids, no leftover or unused time, and more revenue! And I would not visit MV any more...

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