I’ve read and listened to much ado about paid parking but am yet to hear any suggestions that would result in raising any dollar amount that rivals paid parking without a significant increase in taxes. I hear from friends and associates throughout New York state and beyond facing challenges, including dwindling resources and visitation in their communities ... and many are considered “tourist” communities. The consistent theme I do witness among the informed populous, is keeping positive outlooks and becoming ambassadors for their community rather than pointing fingers to those perceived at fault.
Each Summer, and this is my 40th as a resident of Cooperstown, I have heard residents of the village and surrounding communities state they will not, and do not shop, in the village business district during the busy summer season. Now it seems so many say they want to shop here, but the new reason they do not is paid parking ... go figure. There does seem to be a confusion about being a Cooperstown resident and paying taxes. It’s true, many mailing addresses are in the 13326 zip code but it’s those that reside within the specified village of Cooperstown that are paying village taxes. The village is a hub for many, both residents and non-residents, and paid parking is one way to help ease the financial burden so we may all enjoy what this village has to offer.
Is Paid Parking really the cause?
I am sorry the Cooperstown merchants are experiencing a decline in business, but is paid parking really the cause? Paid parking had only been in effect from Memorial Day, May 27 to June 20, a matter of three weeks and three days, which is the time period in which the merchants claim to have lost thousands of dollars in revenue. Three weeks is hardly a fair test. The merchants blame their losses on reduced local business. Have local residents really spent that much money in each of those stores in a three week period?