KINGSTON – Motorists using parking meters in the City of Kingston
may now charge the fees on their credit cards. They may still use coins,
but with the use of a new smartphone app, “Whoosh!” if their
pockets are empty, they may place the new $1 per hour fee on their plastic.
There is also a 35-cent per transaction charge that goes to Whoosh!
Mayor Steven Noble, who pushed for the new system, said it is designed
to make parking in the city more convenient. Using the smartphone app
also allows motorists to move from meter to meter with their unused time
and if their time is running out, the app will notify them.
Parking meter fines have traditionally been a significant source of revenue
for cities, but Noble said Kingston’s budget is relying less on
those fines and wo0uld like more visitors to the city because of the more
convenient means of paying for meters.
“Having a visitor to Kingston get a $25 ticket for getting a cup
of coffee never makes someone happy, and so if we can make it more convenient
and we give out less of those, there are other ways in our budget to be
able to find revenue to help provide the services that we do,” he
said. “We hope that by reducing the number of tickets we are giving
out, it will encourage more and more business development.”
On Monday, June 12, meters in the Rondout/Lower Broadway are will be
increased to $1 with Midtown and Uptown meters updated immediately afterward
with full city-wide implementation of all 400 by the end of the month.
Each updated meter will accept the Whoosh! app.