Letter to Editor: Parking plan a money grab

I live at 59 Ledgelawn and the way I read the parking plan my street, as all streets in downtown Bar Harbor, is permit parking only (except for metered spaces). This may or may not be enforced from May 15 (this year, May 1 subsequent years) till Halloween.

Anybody coming to visit me who doesn’t have said permit will be illegally parked if they do so in front of my house. I read that I may purchase a permit for them at a cost to me of $5 per day.

What if I am having a party at my house and several people are coming from areas other that Bar Harbor?

When I addressed that question to a member of the Town Council, the councilor responded by suggesting I could park my vehicles on the street and have guests park in the driveway, buy the guest permits, or ask guests to park at the ball field for free and walk.

Forcing me to pay for parking for guests in front of my house, asking guests to park blocks away and telling me to move my car for a problem that only exists in front of my house for one week at most a year but enforcing it for 24 weeks is unfriendly, it’s a money grab, and it’s absurd.

I understand we have a problem. I live in downtown Bar Harbor.

We have effectively monetized housing in this town, turning every house into a business (weekly rental), I voted against this knowing that the end result would be a town completely unaffordable to virtually anybody who lives here.

Need proof? Just look at all of the sold houses in the last six years, you can see them all on Airbnb or VRBO. When I retire I will join the ranks and turn my house into a business. If necessary I will get my rental permit before they become illegal, should that day come.

We have now monetized parking in our community. Parking has become another commodity that we have turned into a business. I feel that this has the end result of forgetting that there is still a community struggling against the powerful forces of business here, and we are losing.

Making the lower half of Ledgelawn, Glen Mary, Shannon, Cromwell Harbor, etc. permit only harms all of the residents who live there — those that remain.

We have more than enough hypocrisy on our boards and enforcement already.

I understand that a lot of work has gone into this but it looks as though significantly more thought and paperwork was done on revenue and not as much on the people who live here.

Sean Sweeney

Bar Harbor

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