CA: Union City Parking Program Nets $310K

UNION CITY -- The city has netted nearly $310,000 from the paid parking program in the BART station district in its first year, according to a staff report.

"That will be general fund money that will be going into next fiscal year's budget," Redevelopment Agency Manager Mark Evanoff said.

The total value of parking citations citywide has more than doubled in the 12 months since the program was implemented in April 2010, although meter and permit revenues were about 18 percent lower than projected, according to the report.

The total value of parking citations citywide was $468,764, compared with $182,110 the previous year. Meter and permit revenues, however, were only $116,517 -- $26,483 less than consultants originally estimated. Sixty-eight percent of citations have been paid, but $408,000 in fines -- and penalties that can double the original fine -- have yet to be collected.

Expenses for the program totaled $275,143, including the salaries of two new part-time police cadets who issue citations. Previously, the city had only one cadet who issued citations for street-sweeping violations.

"The parking citations are greatly more than was ever anticipated," Evanoff said. "Those two part-time parking cadets, and the other third parking cadet, are doing their work and enhancing the city revenues."

Commuter parking on the streets and in city-owned lots fell sharply but BART ridership did not decrease.

Before the program was introduced, 500 to 650 cars were parked daily along Alvarado-Niles Road, Union Square, 11th Street, 12th Street, J Street, Decoto Road and Meyers Drive, according to the report. Most of the cars belonged to BART commuters.

"The intent was to direct BART commuters to park in the parking lots, free up the city streets for retail patrons and for short-term visitors to the apartments," Evanoff said.

Since the program was introduced, about 120 cars a day parking in the two city-owned lots.

Contact Rob Dennis at 510-353-7010.

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