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The Telegram
  • 43 parking meters smashed

  • Over 40 parking meters were broken into this past weekend, forcing Herkimer village police to adjust the way they write parking tickets.

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  • Over 40 parking meters were broken into this past weekend, forcing Herkimer village police to adjust the way they write parking tickets. 
    Someone “smashed” a total of 43 parking meters on North Main and Prospect streets sometime over the weekend, stealing the coin collection boxes, said Police Chief Joseph Malone. He did not disclose any details, saying the investigation is ongoing.
    The village board will address the thefts at its meeting on Tuesday at 7 p.m., said Amanda Viscomi, clerk and treasurer.
    Police meanwhile are enforcing an existing village law that limits parking in the business district to two hours, and officers are applying it to any vehicles parked in the spots with broken meters, Malone said. The law is not applied for spots with working meters, which will continue to be regulated by the coin collection method.
    Police officers have started marking with chalk a tire of any vehicles parked in a broken meter spot. The time is written and if the vehicle has not moved in two hours it is ticketed, according to Malone. A ticket can be avoided if the vehicle is moved to another parking spot before two hours passes, he added. 
    The majority of the broken meters are on North Main Street, between Mary and Green streets.
    Without any assistance from insurance or possible restitution from an arrest of the responsible party, the cost to replace all 43 of the broken meters could be as high as $86,000.
    Viscomi estimates a single parking meter costs the village $2,000. Unable to provide the total number of meters in the village, Viscomi said further information on the insurance, overall replacement cost and meter revenues will be made available as the village board discusses its options.
    The village recently included $12,000 for parking meter repairs and replacement in its latest bond anticipation note.
    Having such a tight budget and not nearly enough budgeted for all of the broken meters, Viscomi feels the village board may have to “rethink” parking meters altogether. “I don’t even know if we’ll be able to afford it,” she added. 
     

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