City to vote on pay-by-phone meters

By: Julie Snyder | Mount Clemens - Clinton - Harrison Journal | Published September 20, 2012

MOUNT CLEMENS — Ever find yourself pulling up to a parking space and it suddenly dawns on you that you don’t have change for the meter?

It’s a common problem, and it’s one that city officials in Mount Clemens might soon alleviate.

The Mount Clemens Board of Commissioners is expected to take action during its next regular meeting on whether to adopt a new pay-by-phone parking meter system.

Commissioner Roger Bunton said should the program be approved, all people will need is a cellphone, and they can call the number that appears on a sticker affixed to the parking meter.

“You’ll be able to say how long you will be parked, and if your time runs out, you will be able to call and add more time,” said Bunton.

The issue of implementing pay-by-phone parking meters was brought up during a brief work session on Sept. 17.

The specifics of how the program would work, including what kind of information a person would have to provide, such as a license plate number or a credit card number, and if there is a fee to use the service, will be discussed during the commission’s Oct. 1 meeting.

Bunton said all meters in the city will still take change; the pay-by-phone program would simply be an option.

Cities across the country are employing similar services, which is made possible with advances in technology. In San Francisco, drivers with equipped smart phones can download an application that allows them to tap their device on a meter’s pay-by-phone sticker. Though the Macomb County Department of Roads is not affiliated with individual cities or townships using such a program, those in other parts of the country do and report that pay-by-phone meters help reduce congestion in some of the more bustling areas.

The City Commission will next meet at 7 p.m. Oct. 1 at Mount Clemens City Hall, 1 Crocker Blvd.