Task Force to Discuss Possible Hike in Downtown Meter Rates

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COLUMBIA - The Downtown Parking Task Force will meet Wednesday at 4 p.m. and will discuss the idea of raising the meter rates.

The meter rates are currently 60 cents per hour.  The Task Force board wants to open up for discussion the possibility of increasing this per hour rate and weigh the pros and cons.

Board member Skip Walter said one pro of raising the meter rates would obviously be more revenue for the city.  He said with more revenue, Columbia could purchase more high tech meters for the downtown area.  Out of the roughly 1800 meters that are downtown, 115-120 are the high tech types.

Walter described the idea as "lifting up a rock and seeing what's under it."  Nothing has been decided yet, but the board does want to discuss different outcomes of a higher rate.

Even though this is just an idea and no increase has been put in place yet, one resident downtown was pretty opposed to paying even more.

"I think it's ridiculous to raise the meter price, I mean we have enough trouble parking already all across Columbia and it's a fair enough price as it is. I mean, how much is it right now, 60 cents? If they want to raise it above 60 cents and give us tickets on top of that I think it's ridiculous," said Dylan Hudson.

Walter said no one told the board to discuss this and no other entity suggested it to the board, it just wants to discuss the possiblity and weigh the outcomes.

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