Regarding the City of Rye’s finances, as detailed in the June 29 issue, one source of revenue that would also create more equity among residents would be to price train station parking at market rates. The multi-year waitlist (years) and low turnover are indisputable evidence that station parking is underpriced. The City loses revenue while those without permits effectively subsidize the fortunate incumbents. Turnover is depressed because those lucky enough to have spots are loath to give them up.
There are many ways to implement market pricing, with the most efficient being some variation of an annual auction. Auctions are held in numerous circumstances and have been used elsewhere to allocate parking. A simple Internet-based auction could be set up using established techniques (probably a Dutch auction).
For those worried about rich bidders getting all the permits, I hate to break the news, but rich people are already getting the permits, just at a below-market price. If someone is outbid for a permit, at least he or she might see some more potholes get fixed with the extra revenue.
The City has better uses for its money than giving away discounts on parking. It’s also time to provide all of our residents an opportunity to use this scarce asset.
- James F. Wilson