Permit parking now enforced

BAR HARBOR — Parking enforcement has begun in both permit and paid parking areas downtown, despite lingering technical problems, according to Town Manager Cornell Knight.

Parking enforcers have been entering plate numbers manually into handheld devices in order to determine if cars parked in permit areas have valid permits on file. Though the plate readers are working, Knight said, they cannot connect to the database of stored license plates.

“Some more programming needs to be done to recognize plates,” Knight said.

Once that happens, parking enforcers will be able to work more efficiently, scanning license plates from a vehicle.

The town has purchased a RAV4 hybrid vehicle with scanners mounted, to be used for parking enforcement.

Knight told the Town Council Tuesday that the town has raised about $530,000 to date in parking and permit fees. The online permit system has issued 1,689 permits so far.

Finance Director Stan Harmon told councilors he has not yet calculated the net revenues from parking after expenses. He did note that revenue from vehicle excise tax was up 13 percent over last year, which he suspected was a result of people registering cars to obtain their permits.

Paid parking has been in effect since May 22, when meters and kiosks first went online. Permit parking began a month later. The paid and permit parking program will be in effect through Oct. 31.

Becky Pritchard
Former Islander reporter Becky Pritchard covered the town of Bar Harbor and was a park ranger in Acadia for six seasons.
Becky Pritchard

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