Paid Parking In East Hampton Village Goes Back To Square One - 27 East

Paid Parking In East Hampton Village Goes Back To Square One

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East Hampton Village will enforce it's parking rules, in whatever form they wind up taking, with its new scanner-mounted vehicle rather than traditional chalk sticks in the hands of young TCOs.

East Hampton Village will enforce it's parking rules, in whatever form they wind up taking, with its new scanner-mounted vehicle rather than traditional chalk sticks in the hands of young TCOs.

authorMichael Wright on Apr 8, 2021

Citing confusion and concerns by village business owners about plans for new hourly parking fees in the village’s main lots, East Hampton Village Mayor Jerry Larsen has reset the entire proposal back to where it started: a plan to simply charge a lump sum for non-residents who wish to park in village lots for more than the current two-hour minimum.

The board agreed that ahead of next week’s second public hearing on the plans to introduce fees for parking — which will remain — that the first two hours of parking anywhere in the village will be free to all comers. Following that two hours, village residents will be allowed to leave their cars for another hour without fee, but all others will be charged $10 for a third hour, under the latest proposal. Any car left longer than three hours, regardless of where the owner lives, will be ticketed.

“This will be a lot simpler and a good way to start,” the mayor said, welcoming the suggestion by Trustee Arthur Graham of charging $10 for the extra hour allowance. “I”m in favor of the $10, start a little slower, don’t scare people.”

The mayor had hoped that the new paid parking approach would generate as much as $2 million per year in new revenue for the village that he had hoped to use to offset the cost of a new sewer system.

The pay-to-stay allowance will not apply to on-street parking spots anywhere in the village, which will still be capped at one-hour. The mayor also introduced the idea of creating new areas in each lot where there will one-hour, no exceptions parking limits to encourage turnover and help keep spots in the chronically crowded lots available — something business owners had asked for.

Members of the Village Board who had been skeptical of the most recent proposal of charging $2 per hour for out-of-towners to park, said they welcomed the change.

“I think this is the best approach and the way to launch this program,” Trustee Rose Brown said.

The summer will still see the introduction of a fully automated system of enforcing the village’s various parking rules. The East Hampton Village Police Department is already using a new vehicle mounted with license plate scanners to patrol its streets and parking lots to ensure cars are not over-staying the time limits. Car owners will be asked to download a mobile phone app and link their vehicle license plates to a credit card that can be charged for any parking fees incurred.

Scanners will also be placed at the entrances to each lot to keep track of the total time a vehicle is in the lot, to discourage the “two-hour-shuffle” that some business employees have used for years to park in the time-limited lots, avoiding tickets by moving their cars multiple times during the day. The new system will require that the vehicle actually leave the lot and re-enter before the time allowance resets.

Village Administrator Marcos Baladron noted that the village will benefit from reams of data the parking scanners will collect over the summer about who is parking in the village lots for various time periods that will inform a better discussion of the approach to charging for parking in 2022.

Mr. Larsen had pitched the paid parking approach as a way to start building a municipal fund for the construction of a sewer system for the downtown area. But this week the mayor said officials had begun looking at avenues to bonding for the sewer system, rather than relying on millions in new parking fees that the pared-down system may not produce.

Village Attorney Will Leave
 

The Village Board on Thursday also accepted the resignation of Beth Baldwin from the village attorney’s post and approved the hiring of Vincent Messina of the Sayville firm Messina Perillo Hill LLP.

Ms. Baldwin, who was an assistant Town Attorney for 11 years and has been the village attorney since 2019, said that she had accepted a job at the Riverhead law firm Esseks, Hefter, Angel DiTalia and Pasca, LLP. She will remain on the job for the village until April 16.

Mr. Messina was Mr. Larsen’s legal advisor for his campaign for mayor last year and has been serving as part-time outside counsel for the village since the fall, handling litigation matters for the village zoning and planning boards.

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