Sunday, August 3, 2014

Boise Officials on Parking Sensors: 'City has achieved the result it was hoping for'

Posted By on Sun, Aug 3, 2014 at 12:00 PM

After a standoff with the Ada County Highway District over smart parking meters, the city of Boise has declared a small victory after ACHD released a statement that sensors for the meters will remain in place for now.

"After seeing the premature action yesterday by ACHD to begin removal of the sensors with no prior notice to citizens or businesses, the city felt it was important to ensure no action was taken before the permit application review was complete," City Hall spokesman Adam Park wrote in a statement released Aug. 1. "With today's announcement by ACHD that the sensors will not be removed for the immediate future, the city has achieved the result it was hoping for."

The city and ACHD, which has curb-to-curb responsibility for all Ada County roadways—including those within Boise city limits, have been squaring off over the meters since the summer of 2013. That's when the city installed several of the hockey puck-sized sensors under Boise roadways. The sensors enable smart parking meters, which allow users to pay for parking with credit cards. The city applied for permits through ACHD to place the sensors in 2013, though ACHD has not moved to formally release or deny the permits.

In July, ACHD delivered a memo to Boise Mayor Dave Bieter outlining a proposal to allow the sensors that included the city both permitting and licensing the sensors. The proposal would allow the city to install the remaining 132 sensors, but indicated that if the city didn't agree ACHD's terms, the agency would remove the already-installed sensors.

The city reapplied for permits for the sensors but balked at having to enter into a licensing agreement with ACHD. The city then filed for a restraining order against ACHD, which was rejected Friday by Judge Deborah Bail.

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