Thursday, March 24, 2011

ACS Backs Off Of Promise to Replace Meters By The End of the Year; Councilor Ed Coleman Cites "Bait and Switch" Tactics, Asks that Contract Be Cancelled

Old Double Parking Meter (only the
 very top part is being replaced)
I blogged earlier about ACS's bait and switch tactics, showing city officials shiny new meters to replace the old meters during the debate over the contract last year, and then only replacing the very top of the meters with a card reader.  As a result, the shiny card readers now sit on rusty casings with often bent poles.

After my blog post, I received some feedback that the fix was temporary...just to get something in place until the new meters boxes could be installed which would be in by the end of the year.  A councilor looked into it and confirmed that fact.  That didn't make much sense to me though as it would seem to take just as long to install the tops and scrape off the labels as to actually install new parking meters or boxes if that was what they were going to do.

Councilor Ed Coleman
Now, it appears that ACS, er "ParkIndy", is backing off its promise to replace the meters by the end of the year..leaving us with the rusty, bent meters going into the Super Bowl.

Councilor Ed Coleman has asked that the contract be cancelled due to ACS not living up to the deal.  Unfortunately when I looked at the contract, I saw nothing spelled out which requires ACS to actually replace the entire meters.

As reported by WRTV, ACS, er ParkIndy, has apparently backed off its promise to replace the rusty, bent parking meters by the end of the year:
Lou Gerig, a representative for ParkIndy, said cosmetic changes aren't needed.

"Replacing an existing fully functional meter casing with a similar but new casing is unnecessary," Gerig said.

Gerig also said the new meters were demonstrated during technology previews and at public meetings.

"Later this year, new pay boxes will be installed, reducing the number of meters," Gerig said.
We were told we were getting shiny new meters to impress the out-of-towners coming to the 2012 Super Bowl.  Now read Gerig's words closely.  He says that it is "unnecessary" to replace the meters if they are functional. That is a definite change.

If you watch the video, Gerig, refused to appear on camera and answer questions.  Instead he sent a written release. So in the future when we have concerns about how ParkIndy is running the parking meter operation, we won't be able to get a live representative to answer questions?

Bait and switch.  Yep that appears to be it.


Had Enough Indy? said...

So, it likely would have cost the City about $4 million to replace just the tops???? What a terrible decision by this Council.

Downtown Indy said...

That was quick. Only a month in and they are telling us doing half as job is good enough because to do more is 'unnecessary.'

Get used to it folks. We have 49 years and 11 months of this coming.

Anything that trnspires in the next 49 years and 11 months will be driven by what ACS can minimally do without violating their contract.

That's a lot different from a city-owned operation where we could get a Council vote on what's needed vs. what it currently is, and make changes that the taxpayer wants.