First Street parking hours tested

John Scarffe, Nederland.  Nederland Marshal Paul Carrill shared with the Nederland Downtown Development Authority (NDDA) a test the Police Department is going to conduct to create parking space turnover on First Street during a regular NDDA meeting on Wednesday, March 15, 2017, at the Nederland Community Center. The test will be conducted from June 1 to August 1, 2017, to enhance traffic flow on the First Street corridor.

Carrill said the town faces congestion problems and public parking problems on First Street, and the police have no way to enforce parking problems except for disabled parking spots. The Police Department has been working with the Nederland Public Works Department to come up with a solution.

“Due to historic parking issues along the First Street business corridor, the Nederland Police Department (NPD) is planning on conducting a 2-hour time limit parking test along east and west First Street to collect objective data as to public parking space abuse,” Carrill wrote in a memorandum to the NDDA Board. “The NPD plans to purchase several printed 2-hour time limit signs, and with the assistance of the Nederland Public Works Department, will install the signs on the north side of east and west First Street between Jefferson Street and Snyder Street.”

“Based on staffing and call load, the NPD will monitor and enforce the 2-hour time limit signs from June 1, 2017, till August 1, 2017. At the conclusion of the test, the NPD will provide the Nederland Board of Trustees and the Nederland Downtown Development Authority with a written report,” Carrill wrote.

“It is anticipated that any fines and/or fees generated from this test will be used to reimburse the NPD for the costs of conducting this test. Revenue over the test costs will defer to General Revenue.”

Carrill told the Board the area has 29 parking spots and one disabled space in front of New Moon. A second one will be added across the Street from James Peak.

On March 20, the Police Department issued the following notice: “Attention Nederland Area Drivers: Please be aware of the newly posted Disabled Parking Spot next to the pedestrian crossing on East 1st Street. This is a reassignment of the Disabled Parking Spot that was previously in front of the James Peak Brewery. This parking spot reassignment was created to assist Disabled Motorists while visiting the Nederland Business District.”

Carrill told the NDDA Board the reason for changing the disabled parking space is because a team comes through Colorado towns, and if a disabled spot doesn’t meet regulations, the team may sue the business or Town to have the Disabled Parking spot brought up to federal regulation. These law suits can run into the thousands of dollars or be settled out of court for up to $3,000.

The team is running out of Denver, so it’s just a matter of time before they come to Nederland. The test will give the Town objective data as to whether we want signage or the honor system, enforcement or a paid kiosk, Carrill said.

Program assumptions include a public awareness campaign with an article in The Mountain-Ear. Those impacted will be residents, business employees, community members and visitors. NPD staffing and workload will accommodate enforcement. “This may or may not happen in line with recent resignations,” Carrill said.

The two-hour posted parking limit will be from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Revenue projections are unknown. The fine range will be $75 for a timed parking violation, crosswalk parking violation and a fire hydrant parking violation, and $215 for a disabled parking violation, according to the memo.

The fee range will be $35 court fee $30 police surcharge. These fees only apply if the case is taken to a court hearing and the defendant is found or pleads guilty, with no fine or fee if the defendant is found innocent. At end of the test period, NPD will provide a written report and will remove or keep signs and enforcement. The Town of Nederland, NDDA and NPD will negotiate a revenue split.

The next regular meeting of the NDDA Board will be on Wednesday, April 19, 2017, at 6:30 p.m., at the Nederland Community Center.