According to Katz, it was the board’s intent to talk about on-street paid parking during the meeting, but since there has been legal action taken board members would not discuss any part of the law that is under legal challenge. However, he said board members could talk about other paid parking matters such as the machines themselves.
Also at the meeting, Stagecoach Coffee’s Rod Torrence presented initial results of a questionnaire seeking information from downtown merchants about the impact of paid parking on their businesses and customers. Contrary to what village officials are claiming, Torrence said, the effects of paid parking have been instantaneous and unmistakable to business owners with virtually every respondent reporting an immediate negative impact on sales and customer behavior. For example, he said, “The Village Cobbler’s positive growth trend abruptly ended with paid parking, with sales now trending negatively. Reid’s Barbershop reports the loss of hundreds of dollars in weekly revenue since paid parking. Rudy’s Liquor Store, one of the village’s most venerable shops, is losing $100 a day in sales versus 2012 since Memorial Day. Tins & Bins has experienced a $2,000 sales decline between Memorial Day and June 20 compared to last year. Willis Monie Books went from positive sales increases in May to negative sales in June. Muskrat Hill reports a revenue loss of $8,000 in just three weeks since the advent of paid parking. Stagecoach Coffee, after doubling its seating capacity in February, has seen the sales momentum from its expansion drop by $250 a day. Sal’s Pizzeria claims to have lost local support and is unsure whether area customers will ever return. Locals tell Sal’s they are being ‘punished’ for being local and simply will not use paid parking …”
The list goes on.
Christopher Grady, owner at Stagecoach Coffee, said he worries he is afraid people are going to change their shopping habits.