Thursday, February 02, 2006

Free Parking in San Antonio

City Councilmember Roland Gutierrez is thinking outside the box. The District 3 Councilmember announced that he would like to create a one year pilot program that would wave all parking meter fees for hybrid owners.

The goal: “To encourage the use of hybrid vehicles in San Antonio, to provide cleaner air in San Antonio and to increase our quality of life.

The San Antonio Express News says that Gutierrez is on the way to make this happen.

Gutierrez said the idea has garnered the support of a majority of his council colleagues. It will be considered by the council's Quality of Life Committee, and could emerge as a detailed ordinance ready for council action within six weeks.

Councilman Roger Flores, in whose downtown district most of the city's parking meters are located, said he supports the move as the city faces federal financial penalties starting in 2008 if it doesn't take steps to keep its air clean.

Ordinances like these are creating more incentives to get a hybrid. Gutierrez breaks it down:

"This type of incentive, which will provide a $500 to $600 savings by someone who drives and has to park downtown, along with the $500 to $600 savings in gas efficiency, coupled with the tax credit of upwards of $3,000 that owners get from the IRS," could help sway some car-buying decisions, he said.

It is good to see the city being proactive. This won’t fix our air quality for the long haul, but instead of creating a sweeping policy, it appears that they are going to tackle this monster with a series of small solutions. Bravo, maybe we can get in on some of that switch-grass action next.


Post a Comment

<< Home