June 29, 2018
TO THE EDITOR:
Reading the Carteret County News-Times June 27 front page, I was more than aghast at the lack of basic understanding of the spirit of Beaufort by our current town board consisting of Ann Carter, John Hagle, Sharon Harker, Marianna Hollinshed and Charles McDonald.
The reason I state their names is that I hope this upcoming holiday weekend if you happen to see them out and about, you will voice your opinion of their consensus of doing away with reserving ONE parking space for the 13 houses in town that have no driveway to park their car.
Those minuscule 13 parking spaces in front of homes that have a painted car length strip white with the black lettering of “Restricted Parking – Resident” are an attempt to give taxpaying homeowners an opportunity to park one car in front of their house that was initiated several years ago after this same town board decided to initiate paid parking. That decision FORCED store and restaurant employees to find a place to park their car if they didn’t want to pay an average of $6 a day to be employed. Therefore, they sought out “free” on street parking in residential areas.
The narrow debate given at the 4 p.m. work session Monday, June 25, (which many citizens are unable to attend) gave some thought as to whether or not the person living in the house was “mobile,” and therefore, very limited in walking blocks from where he/she parked or had the car parked. That discussion quickly fizzed out. They then decided to do away with “Resident Only” parking restrictions on those 13 spaces in residential neighborhoods. What about caregivers and visitors to those homes who need a parking space to visit the resident?
Is this what Beaufort has become? Do we not follow the lead of many other towns who allow at least one parking space for residents in lieu of their being a taxpaying member and contributor to their town in many ways, including paying property taxes — along with shopping and possibly volunteering for the many great events in this town to draw tourists, fishermen, educators, etc., who also spend money and laud this town?
I hope everyone speaks up about this misguided action, and if an ordinance is needed to allow a parking space in front of a house that has no off street parking, just do it!