CARTA, when it takes over parking meter enforcement on Oct. 1, will be cracking down on "meter feeders."
Tom Dugan, executive director, said, "The on-street meters are not for employees to use all day. They are for those doing business in the stores."
He said CARTA is looking into high-tech meter readers, including the use of license tag numbers that would help more easily identify who is staying on the same parking meter for more than the two-hour limit.
Also, he said CARTA is looking at purchasing new multi-space meters that will accept credit cards and not just quarters, dimes and nickles. He said those would replace a large number of the current single or two-headed meters.
Mr. Dugan said CARTA is confident that it can exceed the $480,000 in city parking fee collections this past year. He said at one time the city was bringing in about $800,000, but enforcement over the past few years has been spotty.
CARTA is so confident in its future collections that it is guaranteeing the city $480,000 for each of the next two years, then $240,000 the third year. That will help the city absorb the cost of keeping on the current police service technicians and phasing them into different police duties, such as dealing with minor wrecks.
CARTA is considering whether to handle the paperwork of the tickets in-house or contract with a private firm.
Mr. Dugan said he would have liked to have set up a parking office downtown, but he said office space there is pricey. It will be located at CARTA's parking garage next to the Chattanooga Choo Choo in CARTA-owned space.
A person who gets a ticket for overtime parking can go there to pay it, can pay online, or mail it in an envelope.
Also at the office, a person who has a beef about the parking ticket can appeal to a hearing officer. If there is not satisfaction with the officer, an appeal can go on to City Court. The CARTA board will appoint the hearing officer.
Mr. Dugan said in Lexington, Ky., attorneys volunteer to sit pro bono.
The price for overtime parking will be the current $11. It will go to the current $41 if not paid in two weeks.
Mr. Dugan said CARTA will send letters to those who have not paid and, at some point, say install "The Boot" on their vehicle.
And, Steve Jett, CARTA board chairman, said, "There is no provision for tearing up a friend's parking ticket."