A week after tabling a discussion on raising commuter parking costs, the Downers Grove Council will consider an alternate proposal Tuesday that would further increase the disparity in fees for residents and non-residents, according to village documents.
The village council took up the issue of commuter parking permits at its Dec. 4 meeting as part of its 2012-13 budget implementation. That night, a proposal was submitted by village staff that would have increased quarterly fees at the Belmont Road, Main Street and Fairview Avenue train stations by anywhere from 6 percent to 25 percent.
Commissioner Bob Barnett requested the council delay any action on the item to allow consideration of an alternative plan. During a brief discussion of the staff's proposal, council members expressed concern about raising resident fees up to 25 percent, while non-residents would see an increase of just 9 percent.
Though specifics of Barnett's plan were not immediately released, the agenda for Tuesday's council meeting showed that Barnett's proposal would make the fees the same at all three stations—$90 for residents and $140 for non-residents. Based on current fees, non-residents would see a higher increase than residents, according to village documents.
Under the staff's proposal, the quarterly fee for residents would increase 25 percent at the Belmont and Main Street stations, and 6 percent at Fairview. For non-residents, the cost would increase 9 percent at Belmont and Main Street, and just under 5 percent at Fairview.
Under Barnett's proposal, the fee would increase 12 percent for residents and 27 percent for non-residents at both Belmont and Main Street. At Fairview, the fee would increase 20 percent for residents and 33 percent for non-residents, according to village documents.
The recommended fee schedules are shown below:Train Station Current Quarterly Fee Staff Recommendation Alternative Proposal Belmont Train Station
$140 Non-ResidentMain Street Train Station and Parking Deck (Lot S)
$140 Non-ResidentFairview Train Station
According to village staff, their proposal would increase annual revenue by $65,000, while Barnett's would increase revenue by $81,500.
Because the staff proposal has already been reviewed by Metra and Burlington Northern Santa Fe, the fees would go into effect in the second quarter of 2013 if approved. Should the council opt to pursue the alternative, village staff would have to go back to Metra and BNSF—delaying the implementation until the third quarter of 2013.
On Tuesday, the council will vote on an ordinance the removes parking fees from the municipal code, and places them under administrative regulation. Staff has recommended approval of the ordinance, and will seek direction on which fee proposal to pursue.
The proposed increases to commuter parking rates came about after last year's Downtown Parking Study, which found that the quarterly fees for commuter parking spaces were lower than nearby stations, according to village documents.
The study, conducted by Rich and Associates, found that spaces in nearby Lisle and Naperville cost anywhere from $105 to $145 per quarter, according to village documents.
The Downers Grove Council will meet at 7 p.m. Tuesday at Village Hall, 801 Burlington Ave. For more information, visit www.downers.us.
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