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Oxford’s parking revenue, tickets continue to rise in March

Revenue from parking meters continued to climb in March, collecting the highest amount of money since the meters were installed in 2015.

Most of the increase is due to when parking fees were raised from $1 to $1.25 in January as well as implementing extended enforcement hours, going from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday to 10 a.m. to midnight in January.

The raise is one way city leaders hope to have enough revenue to pay for a new downtown parking garage.

Parking Director Matt Davis presented current revenue figures to the Downtown Parking Advisory Commission on Friday.

In October, during the height of football season, the average weekly meter revenue was about $12,000, with the highest week yielding $13,688. From March 27 through April 2, the amount collected from meters was $17,581.

“It’s the most we’ve ever collected in a week,” Davis said.

For the month of March, meters took in $72,667. Expenses for the month were $27,817, which was higher than usual due to the Parking Department having to replace two meters that were damaged last month when a man having a seizure lost control of his truck and slammed into jcg apparel on the Square. After expenses, the revenue for March was $45,180 and $186,754 for the fiscal year which started Oct. 1.

The proposed parking garage will be paid for with a bond. The yearly payment for that bond could be about $800,000. City officials have stated that the garage needs to be paid for through parking revenue as they do not want to raise taxes to pay for the bond or maintenance of the garage.

On April 18, members of the DPAC will interview four design teams who were selected from a longer list last week. If the commissioners agree to one firm, they will make a recommendation to the Oxford Board of Aldermen at their next meeting.

Parking officers wrote 659 tickets in March with 486 being for overtime parking. Three were issued to people illegally parking in a handicap parking space and 138 were issued for improper parking. Most tickets were written on Thursdays. Davis told the commission another part-time officer was hired to work on Saturdays, which had been lacking coverage for several weeks. Since hired, the officer has issued about 170 tickets on Saturdays since March 1.