DENVER (CBS4) – Denver is considering changing thousands of downtown parking meters. Critics say the new wording on them is flat out misleading and deceptive.
The city admits the messages are confusing and some drivers are getting tickets they don’t deserve.
Chris Katchis is a college graduate, but he couldn’t figure out exactly what he was supposed to do when he pulls up to a meter late at night.
Then there’s Michael Canges, a University of Denver law school graduate and one of Denver’s top lawyers.
“It’s confusing, it’s confusing,” Canges said.
In March the city began allowing overnight parking at thousands of downtown meters. So they put stickers on them saying “overnight parking allowed” from 10 p.m. to 8 a.m.
“My reaction would be of course overnight parking with no money,” Canges said.
But that’s wrong. In small print on the other side of the meter are parking rates covering overnight parking. The sign doesn’t tell the whole story. Many drivers have misunderstood the sticker, assumed the meters are free overnight, and been hit with tickets.
Brian Rickel got a $25 ticket last month for not filling the meter late at night. He would have paid but thought the wording meant it was free.
“They need to change some of the wording,” he said. “The wording is misleading.”
“Some of the feedback we received is seeking clarification for what is on the meters,” Daelene Mix with Denver Public Works said.
Mix said they did not do mean to mislead people to raise more money. But she said something will likely have to change..
“We are considering refining the messaging on the meters,” she said.
The city is now considering tweaking the messages to make things more clear by adding the word “paid” somewhere.
The city says it will finish labeling the meters by mid May. Then it will figure out how to revamp the signage on the meters to make it clearer people have to pay during the overnight hours.