The Fickle Fingers of Government


The Fickle Fingers of Government

As we have reported here and in PT before, the state of Pennsylvania has its fingers in the onstreet parking business in a big way. They must certify, at a cost to local municipalities no doubt, all parking meters in the state. See the story here.

Some "Philadelphia lawyer" or in this case a Pittsburgh lawyer is suing a Pittsburgh suburb over a $5 parking ticket because the meter hadn’t been "certified" by the PA department of Weights and Measures.

Now the Department of Weights and Measures is getting 20 requests a day from cities to perform the certification. Of course it doesn’t have the staff. Soooo …..many cities are stopping writing parking tickets until certification is completed.

Once again, the government is diddling where it isn’t needed. Why not have an independent private firm certify the meters. Let them charge for the certification, so much per meter. My guess is that the certification would be performed on time and under budget. The state could check say one in 100 or one in 1000 to be sure that all was on the up and up. That is if you think that certification is needed anyway.

Hey, is this something a state, regional, or national parking organization should take on and represent the parking industry? But I digress.

Personally I think that solid state parking meters probably don’t need to be certified since the odds of them having a problem is slim to none. As for the old ‘clock mechanism’ units, check em out.

Here’s a case where the cities didn’t follow the rules, got behind in their certification, and then some hotshot lawyer brought them up to speed. It will cost the cities thousands in lost revenue.

Parking Pros need to be attentive to these issues, however the fault, it seems to me goes deeper than that. If the state wants to be involved, they should also be able to handle the volume.

What say ye Pennsylvania parking folks?


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John Van Horn

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