(07-27-16) Roughly 75 members of the Ward One Residents Association (WORA) turned out last Tuesday for a conversation with SP+, the city’s comprehensive parking management firm.  This was the second meeting SP+ has scheduled with WORA since March when the company began operations in Annapolis.  The purpose of the meeting was to outline several new initiatives designed to improve the parking experience in Annapolis.  Jon Kemp, SP+ regional manager, and Jason Prola, SP+ senior manager for Annapolis, led the discussion.  Tara Hargadon, chief of staff to Mayor Pantelides, and Alderman Joe Budge also participated.  Highlights of the discussion included:

Improved residential enforcement:  To reduce illegal parking on residential streets, SP+ has begun using license plate recognition technology, or LPR, to identify on-street parking violations.  By installing LPR technology on enforcement vehicles, enforcement officers can scan license plates to identify vehicles parked illegally faster and more accurately than before.

Residential parking permit update:  SP+ thanked residents for participating in the first ever online residential parking permit program and said that all residential permits were to be mailed no later than July 20th.   Jon and Jason also stated that SP+ is making software enhancements that will improve the user experience next year.

New parking violation fine schedule:  To help reduce illegal parking on residential streets, the City of Annapolis enacted a new parking violation fine schedule in July.  Initial violations will be fined $40.00 and subsequent violations will be fined on an escalating scale. (Full schedule linked here.)  To smooth the transition, the city has delayed the escalation schedule until Tuesday, September 6, meaning parking violations until then will be fined $40.00.  In the interim, SP+ is educating parkers by issuing warnings for initial offenses and will soon provide a helpful postcard outlining ways to avoid getting a ticket.

 Helping local businesses with parking changes:  Mayor Pantelides, the City Council and SP+ appreciate that many employees of businesses park on residential streets.  To ease the transition, the Mayor directed SP+ to work with local businesses to identify alternative parking options for employees.  SP+ is offering discounted parking validations in the Knighton and Gotts garages for employees who park after 3 p.m. and exit between 6 p.m. and 6 a.m.  To secure validations, businesses must contact SP+ at annapolisparking@spplus.com or (443) 648-3087.  Validations will only be distributed to owners of Annapolis businesses or their designees. To learn about parking options prior to 3 p.m., businesses should contact SP+ directly.

Staying up to date on parking improvements:  SP+ encouraged the audience to stay informed on parking improvements by either signing up for the e-newsletter at www.AnnapolisParking.com, following on Facebook or Twitter, or contacting SP+ at annapolisparking@spplus.com or
(443) 648-3087.