Now that the city has taken over the Parking Authority and already used some of the surplus for the municipal budget shortfalls it has to be up front with the public and openly state what the mission of the new city Parking Utility is. "Provide Parking or Produce Budget Revenue."
In addition to defining the Utility's mission the mayor should review past agreements made between property owners and the former Parking Authority (in their attempt to meet zoning required parking rules) to see if these agreements are still in effect and whether the residents are using them and at what cost. And finally Mayor Roberts should review the parking provisions of all the newly constructed developments to determine their parking policies, what rates they charge, how many of their residents actually use the parking facilities and what effect the rates have or usage.
The Spirit of the Parking Requirement was that off-street parking would accommodate the additional people coming into Hoboken while leaving the on-street parking for the current residents thereby inconveniencing no one.
Permission to build was contingent upon the provision of supplying parking so as not to impact upon the quality of life of an already over-burdened citizenry desperate for parking. It was never intended to be a separate commercial windfall for developers. The answers to these questions will determine how effectively the residents of Hoboken are being served by the various parking regulations on the books and whether or not the parking lot tax is being properly applied. With strong leadership the issue can be addressed to the satisfaction of all parties concerned.
E. Norman Wilson