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>Don’t count on getting 15 minutes of parking for your dime

>Don’t count on getting 15 minutes of parking for your dime

Some time ago, during one of the many changes in Ridgewood parking rules, the two parking meters next to the post office (near E. Ridgewood Ave. and facing north on N. Walnut St.) were changed to have a 15-minute limitation. The idea was to give people just enough time to run into the post office and run out, freeing those handy meters for others.

But don’t count on getting a full 15 minutes for your dime.

About a month ago I put a dime in the meter closest to the corner–meter #216. (Yes, they have I.D. numbers.) To my surprise, the number of minutes that popped up on the screen was not 15, but 12. I later called the police department to report this; they kindly asked if I had gotten a ticket. No. But I had made it back with a minute or two to spare, when it should have shown 5 more minutes.

It’s hard enough to be sure you’ll get out of the P.O. line in 15 minutes; shaving 20% off the total makes the deadline even tighter. What’s really wrong is that the patron who receives a ticket and didn’t notice the number of minutes allowed may not realize that the meter zipped to zero in record time, and just pay up. What will happen as we get closer to those long P.O. lines for holiday mailings?

Today I parked at the second meter from the corner, #217. It had 3 minutes left on it. I know these meters are not additive and didn’t expect to get 18 minutes, as I would have on other meters. But the number that popped up was 14. Is this random?

When I returned from the post office 11 minutes later (whew!), the meter I’d previously reported (#216), which had a car next to it, was flashing. Has #216 been adjusted since I reported that it was giving only 12 minutes? Does anybody check the accuracy of the short-time meters, which exist elsewhere in town as well, to make sure they aren’t shaving minutes off the little time allowed? If the meters can’t be adjusted to that degree of accuracy, maybe they should allow 20 minutes for 15 cents.

How many tickets at 15-minute meters have been received, and paid, unfairly?

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One thought on “>Don’t count on getting 15 minutes of parking for your dime

  1. No I had the same experience today and received a ticket as I was walking out of the post office, which is slower than slow. It said it had 12 minutes when I put my money in. I plan on calling to complain tomorrow.

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