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April 17, 2013

Letter: any questions hover over Rockport meters

To the editor:

The front-page parking meter article headlined “Rockport eyes increasing rates” (the Times, Friday, April 12) warrants a response.

While money has already been allocated at Annual Town Meeting for improved parking meters and the supposed benefits of additional revenues, more information about them is required.

The meters are encouraged by our expert town officials and the company that markets these meters. Now, all of the costs related to these parking meters must be provided, too.

It is not enough to simply promulgate a totality of revenues from them. More data are needed about the costs of the meters, costs related to their service and monitoring, costs of ticketing violators, costs to handle administrative processes, costs of the salaries to various town employees including police and meter officers, to carry out related meter functions, and the ill-will costs of residents and tourists because of the meters must be considered. Once all of these figures are available, then there can be a more legitimate evaluation of the positive and the negative effects of parking meters.

Rockport is a wonderfully unique environment and location. Its many attractive shops, galleries, gardens, beaches, and points of interest encourage visits. The Shalin Liu Performance Center’s outstanding and diverse offerings have created developing interests for residents and others to regularly visit and explore our community.

If there is a sincere desire to encourage residents, tourists and others from proximal towns to use our community’s fine resources and services, however, then let’s demonstrate this by being more welcoming to them.

Perhaps there should be no parking meters whatsoever in Rockport.

Without parking meters, we do away with questionable and discouraging harvesting of additional fees from the public (especially tourist guests), These meters are just an additional form of disguised punitive taxation, along with the funds from the issuance of parking tickets.

JOSEPH N. MUZIO

Normanstone Drive, Rockport

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