Grosse Pointe City waives second quarter parking fees

By: K. Michelle Moran | Grosse Pointe Times | Published July 21, 2020

GROSSE POINTE CITY — Grosse Pointe City officials are taking a number of steps to help businesses in the community during the COVID-19 pandemic.

During a June 15 Grosse Pointe City Council meeting on Zoom, the council voted unanimously in favor of a recommendation from administrators to extend second quarter parking fees paid by businesses and their employees into the third quarter.

As City Manager Pete Dame said, while there were fewer parking fee renewals for the second quarter, which runs April through June, the businesses that did pay for them were largely unable to use them, because Gov. Gretchen Whitmer issued a stay-at-home order shortly after the City had sent out its second quarter parking permit renewals.

Because only essential workers were maintained during the state shutdown, Dame said parking operations “came to a standstill.” He said parking equipment was covered, and gates in parking lots and the parking garage were left up since fees couldn’t be collected and there was no one available to sanitize or repair parking equipment.

“Out of fairness for the people who paid for (the parking permits) and didn’t use them,” Dame recommended allowing those permits to be extended for the July-through-September third quarter.

The council agreed.

“It seems like the right thing to do,” City Councilman Donald Parthum Jr. said.

The extension of parking fees is expected to cost the Parking Fund $25,000, which Dame said is the amount of money the City received for second quarter parking permits this year. By contrast, he said the City received $32,500 in quarterly parking permit renewals for the first quarter of 2020.

Although it does mean a loss in revenue for the Parking Fund, officials think it could at least give a small boost to local businesses.

“Hopefully, it will help businesses come along and bring their employees back,” Dame said.