ENGAGEMENT-The leaders of the Los Angeles Parking Freedom Initiative met yesterday with officials of the Mayor’s office to discuss recent issues surrounding the Mayor’s proposed budget and the future of parking enforcement policy in the city.
The Mayor’s staff has reaffirmed that, in keeping with the Mayor's campaign promise, his office remains committed to a reorientation of parking policy from one of revenue collection to one of public service.
Towards that end, they have invited us to take part in a Working Group on Parking Reform that will also include representatives from various stakeholder groups as well as city staff.
Some of the areas we will seek to address in the Working Group include:
- implementing public service oriented Parking Enforcement practices and policies rather than revenue oriented policies
- decoupling parking fines and fees from the General Fund and the budget process to ensure that parking fines are no longer looked to as a means to achieve a balanced budget
- reducing the cost of certain parking fines
- modifying the parking violations appeals and adjudication process to ensure that citizens are treated more equitably
- establishing a localized process for stakeholders to request changes to parking regulations such as days, hours and length of meter operation, signage, etc. in their neighborhoods
- protecting and enhancing the integrity of the Special Parking Revenue Fund
- establishing a Parking Advisory Board to address future issues
Unquestionably, the work of such a group must be to generate real, practical, implementable and timely solutions to the parking problems faced by Angelenos. We can all agree that a mere sounding board or idea factory that produces no tangible outcomes would not be beneficial.
We reserve the right to continue to develop an effective ballot initiative for the March 2015 citywide election should that be needed to accomplish some or all of the above goals.
We appreciate that the Mayor’s office has chosen this path of constructive engagement and we look forward to a fruitful and forthright process that yields results that facilitate commerce, ease of transit and livability for the businesses and residents of Los Angeles.
(Steven Vincent and Jay Beeber are activists behind The Los Angeles Parking Freedom Initiative. Reach them also on Facebook.