Green car users may get free parking

Metro Council members Mike Jameson, Erik Cole and Jason Holleman introduced a bill Aug. 3 that would allow free parking at spaces with meters for clean technology vehicles, including those powered by electricity, electric hybrid and biofuel.
The move was recommended in the June 2009 report of the Mayor's Green Ribbon Committee on Environmental Sustainability. The aim is to encourage purchase of these vehicles.

The bill was reviewed and recommended by the Traffic & Parking Commission as well as the budget and traffic committees of the Metro Council. It was written as a two-year-long pilot program to see what its impact would be on parking meter revenues.

There are 30,000 vehicles registered in Davidson County that would qualify.

Drivers would need to register a vehicle for a $10 fee to obtain a sticker that would allow the vehicle to be parked for free at a meter space. Half would go to the Public Works Department to help offset loss of revenue from the meters. Metro collected about $1.2 million in 2009 from downtown parking meters.

Metro Council will vote Tuesday on the ordinance. If approved, it would go to Mayor Karl Dean for signing and then become law and take effect.
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