Downtown parking fees and more get bumped up

Parking fees, more going up

It's going to become a little bit more expensive to park downtown Penticton following a series of fee increases at city hall.

Hourly on- and off-street parking rates are being bumped up a quarter to $1.25, while monthly scramble lots are going up $5 to $50 per month. A reserved stall will now cost you $60 a month.

Bylaw services manager Tina Siebert told council Tuesday the increases are to account for inflation, to bring the city in line with comparable cities, and to help fund the replacement of aging parking infrastructure. 

The city has 445 parking meter heads, many which are in need of replacement at $600-$700 a pop.

“Some of them have been in operating since 2004 and we are slowly having to take those offline and buy new ones,” she said.

The increased hourly parking fees are expected to bring the city an extra $56,000 per year. Council heard the city’s bylaw department is currently operating at a deficit, which is also part of the reason rates are being increased. 

Siebert added they will also next year likely start charging the $15 that’s already on the books for resident-only parking passes. The fees has not been charged historically, which is becoming unsustainable. 

Along with the parking fees, the city brought in nominal increases for a wide range of city services, such as arenas/community centre and building department, to offset inflation. 

Of note, it will now cost dog owners $75 to get their pet out of the impound if it is not licensed. 

The city is also bumping up what it charges the Penticton Farmers Market from $400 to $500 a year, and the DPA Community Market from $1,000 to $1,250 annually. 

Mayor John Vassilaki urged staff to consider raising those fees higher in the coming years. 

“They make tens upon tens of thousands of dollars and the city makes a mere few hundred dollars. I just hope in the future, those two markets are very important to the community, but it should be looked at,” he said. 

“I don’t want to put them out of business, but a little bit more should come towards us, because we are the ones doing all the cleaning up. We are the ones that put our staff out there.”

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