Time's up for Fulton Parking Meters
The city shortened the meters from five to two hours about a month ago.
Shop owners and visitors want the longer meters back.
Cornerstone Antiques owner Sharon Vaught said shoppers want to make a day of it when they come to downtown Fulton.
"People come, they go to all the antique shops, the little gift shops and they'll eat lunch. You cannot do it in two hours," she complained.
Vaught said she's talked with all the downtown merchants, and most say five-hour meters are better for business.
Shop owners say the new, two-hours meters leave too many prime parking spots empty.
And, store owners said, that's not the only concern.
"There's mostly women that work downtown, women store owners, and they have to go three or four blocks up dark streets to park. That's a big safety concern of mine."
City Administrator Bill Johnson defended the new time limit because it was based on input from a downtown parking committee that included residents and business owners.
"There's kind of an 'official downtown parking committee' that made this recommendation to change, and now we have a kind of 'unofficial parking committee' that wants us to go back to where we were," said Johnson.
Vaught and other store owners gave the council a petition with 120 signatures asking the city to return the five-hour meters.
The council will discuss the issue at its meeting on Wednesday, Dec. 20.