Vision Vancouver park commissioner Catherine Evans calls for flat-rate permits for pay-parking lots

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      Frequent users of paid parking lots at Vancouver parks, beaches, community centres, and swimming pools could receive a break in advance of the October 20 election.

      That's because the vice chair of the park board, Vision Vancouver's Catherine Evans, will introduce a motion at Monday's (April 16) meeting calling for a program offering flat-rate parking permits.

      "Residents have identified rising parking fees as a barrier to their enjoyment of some Vancouver parks and beaches," the motion states.

      If approved by the board, this would give residents the option of buying a pass at a fixed rate rather than having to keep paying every time they use one of the park board's pay-parking lots.

      Evans's motion also proposes "one-day permits to enable Vancouver residents, including low-income residents, to park in either some or all Park Board paid parking areas for a reduced rate beginning in the spring/summer of 2018".

      It acknowledges that city surveys have shown that a majority residents prefer user fees over property-tax hikes to cover increased costs of services.

      The motion is coming forward shortly after the park board decided not to impose pay parking at Spanish Banks on April 1. This was attributed to better-than-expected first-quarter financial projections.

      At the same Monday meeting, NPA park commissioner Casey Crawford will introduce a motion directing staff to prepare plans to allow for two hours of free parking at Spanish Banks.

      Crawford's motion seeks the board's approval to impose fees for those leave vehicles in Spanish Banks parking lots beyond two hours.

      This year's city budget shows that the park board projects to generate $7.7 million in revenue from parking fees.

      That's up from $7.2 million collected last year, or 7.1 percent.