Beware: Ruthless meters give whopping $40 fines!
Did you know that if you park your vehicle in the downtown core for over two hours while having time on your meter you could receive a $40 fine, but if you let your meter expire you only risk a fine of $5?
Some time ago, I was having a massage that consumed 1.5 hours of my meter’s time. I saw a friend afterwards and we decided to go for coffee at an excellent café downtown.
I inserted another 50 cents in my meter to give myself another hour to enjoy my low fat vanilla-flavoured latte that I love so much. Upon returning to my vehicle and current meter with 15 minutes left, I found a whopping fine of $40 for extending the allowable two hours of parking per meter.
After sharing the story with my friend whom I had met, he told me that his meter had also expired the two-hour threshold, and he, too, received a fine; but it was only $5. Isn’t that interesting?
The City of Kamloops and the Bylaw division need to clearly notify patrons of the downtown core about these levels of fines and the time restrictions on parking. Yes, they will say that the meters are marked with a two-hour limit and a have signage that says, “No repeat metering.” However, the first sign requires you to be at least 140cm tall, have good eyesight, the patience to search for the notice, and finally you need to physically stand over the meter to see it; go see for yourself if you can find the well-hidden two-hour parking limit sign.
Regarding the “No repeat metering” sign, I searched Oxford dictionaries and other sources for “metering,” or “repeat metering,” I could not find a clear definition that would indicate what “metering” is.
My colleague, who is a grammar expert, derived his own definition and explained it to me as such: If I inserted one quarter for 15 minutes, a second quarter inserted into the meter may also be considered as repeat metering; and that would not be allowed.
These ruthless meters do not offer the proper signage, use of language, and warnings of levels of fines on them to inform users; had they, I would have let my meter expiry and pay only $5. Private parking corporations like Impark have excellent signage to inform parkers of do’s and don’ts; Kudos to Impark for being open and honest.
The City of Kamloops collects hundreds of thousands of dollars in fines and parking revenues; better signage on meters would better inform parking patrons of the downtown better and likely reduce the amount of fine revenue that is collected; unless the city’s objective is to collect as much revenue as possible in fines.