July 31, 2013 - 8:00 AM
KAMLOOPS – The city saved about half a million dollars this afternoon by approving a contract with Precise ParkLink Inc. for 90 new pay-by-license-plate hardware.
Council approved a short term borrowing plan for $1.7 million in March but as luck would have it the pay stations, which met all the criteria the city was looking for, came in well under budget. The stations, which will feature solar panels and battery that can go 30 days without direct sunlight, will accept all change (nickels through toonies) as well as credit card or pay by phone functionality.
Community enforcement manager Jon Wilson says timelines as to when the new equipment will be installed is still in discussions as an aggressive marketing and public education system needs to be created to help people adjust to to the new system.
“It may be new to us on Victoria, but similar license plate systems are in use elsewhere in the city,” Mayor Peter Milobar said. “It shouldn't take that long to figure out how to use it."
Coun. Nelly Dever said she believes people will really like the system once they get used to it and realize how user friendly the system is.
As one of the critics of the parking meter change, Coun. Marg Spina lent her support today because the company is willing to defer payments for a year.
“I'm thrilled about that... that's huge, it pays for itself,” Spina said, praising the work of staff in negotiating the payment schedule.
The pay stations will be replacing 850 pay meters in the downtown area. Rates and fines will increase once the system changes over.
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2013