Council passes ordinances increasing fees for valet spaces, requiring receipts

City Council Thursday passed two ordinances that boost the cost for valet parking zone permits and renewals and aim to prevent valet parking customers from getting tickets because their cars were left in illegal spots.

The bills were both introduced by Councilman-at-large James Kenney and got the blessing of council’s rules committee last week. No comments were made by council on either bill today.

One ordinance
requires valets to present customers with a receipt from the licensed, off-street parking facility where their car was parked. The bill also requires that all parking purveyors accept credit cards and debit cards with no additional charge to the customer.

At last week’s rules meeting, First District Councilman Frank DiCicco said  he has heard of many instances in which people have paid $15 or $20 for their cars to be parked by a valet, only to receive by mail weeks later a notice of a fine for parking illegally – at a fire hydrant, for example – plus a late fee to boot.

The other ordinance
changes the annual permit/renewal fee for valet parking zones – the place one pulls over to allow the valet to park – to $2,500 for each twenty feet of curb space in certain parts of the city – Center City, University City, and the Delaware Avenue Entertainment District.

Previously, valet services were charged a $250 permit fee for every 20 feet of curb space they used and an additional $250 for each parking meter that was removed. In all other parts of the city, the bill proposes the annual permit/renewal fee to be $625 for each twenty feet of curb space used for the valet zone.

A third parking bill introduced by Kenney would theoretically reduce the cost of parking in Philadelphia by reducing the parking tax that patrons pay and garage and lot owners remit to the city from 20 percent to 15 percent over the next five years. That one drew about 200 parking industry employees to last week’s hearing, but was held in rules committee to allow more discussion with the administration.

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