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City council votes in favor of two-hour parking downtown

December 02, 2003|by DAVE McMILLION

charlestown@herald-mail.com

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. - Feeding parking meters to keep a parking space downtown could be coming to an end.

The Charles Town City Council on Monday night gave final approval to several new parking changes, including elimination of parking meters on George and Washington streets.

City officials had planned to replace old parking meters on the two streets as part of the town's $7.1 million revitalization, but later decided not to use the meters.

Instead, the city will enforce a two-hour parking limit on George and Washington streets, Mayor Randy Hilton said.

To enforce the new law, city police will mark tires on cars with chalk to determine whether the vehicles have moved within the two-hour time, Hilton said.

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Signs designating the two-hour parking areas are expected to be installed this week, said City Manager Jane Arnett.

In other areas of the city where there are meters, council members proposed making the first two hours in those spaces free.

Now it appears those parking meters could be removed as well.

Charles Town Police Chief Mike Aldridge has suggested that parking meters be removed in the remaining areas of town because it will be confusing to allow two hours of free parking on the machines, Hilton said.

Among other parking changes approved by council members Monday night was increasing the fine for parking violations from $3 to $5. If the fine is not paid within 48 hours, the fine increases to $10, Arnett said.

It was the last meeting of the council for the year, which Hilton said is perhaps the "most successful" year for the city.

To see the progress, all one has to do is look up and down the newly revitalized shopping area, Hilton said.

Hilton thanked fellow council members and Aldridge for the work they have done for the city this year.

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