On Friday, January 13, at 2:00 PM, I met with Wilmington City Officials to discuss parking ticket issues. The meeting went well and we can expect an announcement on some changes to Wilmington Parking on Wednesday. Here was our opening statement for that meeting:
We, as a community, have not been as engaged as we should have been in the city of Wilmington.
While Title 22, section 501 of the Delaware State Code clearly recognizes the need for parking regulations for the health, safety, and general welfare of the public – we, the community, failed to speak up when year after year, Wilmington’s city budget focused solely on revenue generation through parking fines.
We, the community, did not speak up when the city of Wilmington entered into a $580,000 contract with a New Jersey-based company to “Boot” more than 5,000 vehicles a year.
We, the community, did not say anything when the city of Wilmington published budgets for fiscal years 2009 and 2010 setting the annual revenue goals at $4 Million and adding a second “Boot” van.
We, the community, have allowed the city to require each Parking Regulation Enforcement Officer to issue at least 30 parking tickets a day.
We know that it is now our responsibility to improve this system.
We recognize the financial restraints on the city of Wilmington, and we believe that the current parking system is adding to that crisis by discouraging people from living, visiting, and doing business in the city.
A new parking system will promote economic growth and help the city thrive.
We, the community, pledge our time, our talent, and our expertise to create a better system in Wilmington.
Our goal is not just to make minor improvements, but to create a system that will set a new standard which other cities around the world will wish to replicate.
We will use LEAN principles that have helped manufacturers, physicians, attorneys, and government agencies become more efficient and effective.
We will analyze data, research best practices, and create a system that exceeds the goals outlined in the Delaware Code.
We want to partner with the city government to create this system together.
Over the next couple of months:
- we want to spend time with the Parking Regulation Enforcement Officers to better understand the challenges they face,
- we want to review the data for each section of the city and analyze traffic patterns,
- we want to review the training process for Parking Regulation Enforcement Officers,
- we want to review the appeals process and explore ways to make it more efficient and equitable,
- we want to review the “booting” process,
- we want to review the costs involved with this system,
- we want the city of Wilmington’s cooperation and input.
Working together, we are confident that we can develop and implement this new parking system within a year.
We pledge to make this happen.
We need to make a few things abundantly clear – please take note:
- We believe that proper parking enforcement is legitimate and necessary for public safety and a good flow of traffic through the city – we are NOT advocating that the city abandon parking regulations or tickets
- The reason we are pouring ourselves into this effort is simple, we believe in the businesses, artists, entrepreneurs, entertainers, and individuals who make up the city of Wilmington – we DO NOT encourage, support, nor condone any efforts that would punish those people in a misguided attempt to “send a message” to the city government – we ask that you come to Wilmington and see the incredible community that exists and is growing here
- The only way we are going to resolve these issues is by working together – we hope to facilitate cooperation between residents, business owners, educators, visitors, artists, and city officials.
Please, support the Wilmington community, truly great things are happening!