Nogales hears proposal during council meeting for new parking meters with public safety in mind

Posted at 6:50 PM, Jan 11, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-11 20:50:19-05

NOGALES, AZ — Are new parking meters on the horizon for Nogales? KGUN9's Ivan Rodriguez spoke with Nogales Police Chief Roy Bermudez, who has made efforts get Nogales' new parking meters amid safety concerns.

"In this area right here I can guarantee you that probably 100 percent of these vehicles don't belong here," said Bermudez, who said that of all the 200 parking meters in Nogales, many aren't working or have been taken advantage of for years.

To make headway on the issue, Chief Bermudez invited the Municipal Parking Services Company to the last Nogales city council meeting.

At the meeting, the company gave a presentation on how their parking meter technology would help with safety and convenience, while increasing revenue.

Bermudez was excited about the ability of the meters to use cameras.

"It's a force multiplier for public safety because it has a camera that's on 24/7 and it has the ability also to dial 9-1-1, and (the department?) have an interactive conversation in an emergency with our communications division," he said.

Though when it comes to culture in Nogales, people tend to avoid the meters. Bermudez says that, with thousands of people crossing the border every day. cars tend to park in residential areas instead of paying for parking.

"I think it's the fact that we've always done things the way we've always done them and we're not open to change," said Bermudez. "I'm taking advantage of this new council, this new mayor that came in that's very open minded and has the community interest at stake here."

On top of public safety, the CEO of M-P-S Brian Cassady told KGUN9 the meters would also accept U.S and Mexican currency and if you're using the app on your phone - the parking meter could read your license plate and automatically charge your app account.

"We have a meter system in place right now, the fees wouldn't change, nothing would change, the only thing that would change would be the consistent enforcement and the enhanced public safety that comes with that," said Bermudez.

Both the chief and m-p-s agree this was only a study session and no plan has been set.

Now, it would be up to the city council to move forward.