EASTON, Pa. – Easton's audit of downtown parking permits found that about 100 were ineligible or expired, City Administrator Luis Campos said Wednesday.
In August, Campos told city council the city would audit how many invalid permits were being used. At that time, there were 630 downtown permits for 590 allocated spaces, though problems with more cars than spaces at any one time were rare.
That audit, conducted by telephone, found that about 20% of permit-holders had moved out of downtown or were otherwise ineligible, he said after Wednesday's city council meeting.
That means more street parking is available, and pulling the permits may encourage use of parking garages. That generates money for the city.
In August, Mayor Sal Panto said some permit-holders could be "double-dipping," with a parking garage space and a permit.
Many people would prefer to park on the street, he said.
"In Easton, people park on the street," the mayor said on Wednesday. "They don't park in garages."
He said that will change because new garages, such as the one being built on Fourth Street, will be more attractive to drivers, unlike the Pine Street garage, which recently needed $140,000 in emergency repairs just to make it through its final year of use.
The Pine Street garage is due to be replaced perhaps in two years by a two-story deck at the base of City Center Investment Corp.'s "The Marquis," a seven-story total apartment/retail/parking building.