City Manager Lehman Walker has proposed charging $1 for parking in the evenings — possibly starting as early as 4 p.m. — on two city-owned parking lots north of Delmar Boulevard; those lots are now free. The revenue is reflected in his proposal for the budget beginning July 1 but has not yet been considered by the council.
The City Manager came up with this? Could there be a more general, non-specific name for a position ever? If you’re an official for a particular city, isn’t your job to “manage” the city effectively? So what’s this guy’s job then? Oh…wait. Nevermind. Turns out he makes “task forces”:
The idea originally came from a group of citizens, the City Manager’s Budget Advisory Tax Force, which had recommended that the city charge from $3 to $5 to park in the Loop. Walker reduced that to $1 and only at nights.
It’s sad that University City is considering this idea, but it’s even more sad to see how far the term “task force” has fallen. That used to mean something badass. When you hear someone’s putting together a task force, you immediately think of 4 or 5 big mofos, armed to the teeth, with the sleeves removed from every shirt, not a bunch of old bastards trying to make money of the reason they have any money at all to begin with.
As with most University City matter, Joe Edwards, who seemingly owns half of the street, summarized it best:
“it’s good to look at all possible sources of revenue and cuts to balance a budget. But if they think about it for more than a minute, they will conclude it makes no sense and would be counterproductive.”
Edwards said if the move made good business sense, companies like Schnucks, Target and Walgreens would charge for parking.
To which the City Manager replied:
“The difference is that here we are talking about public parking lots supporting private businesses. I can understand people wouldn’t like it if it were $5 or $8 or $20, but this is a $1 charge. It’s not exorbitant.”
Wow…you’re so right. It’s just a dollar! Hell, lets start charging a sidewalk toll too…and a crossing Delmar fee, each are only a dollar, so what’s the harm?! If you really want to make some fast cash, start charging a dollar “wearing a Grateful Dead t-shirt” fee! You’ll be swimming in a baby pool of singles by April.