Letter to the editor: Proposed Dillon overnight parking fee would hurt locals

Carolyn Hime

I was dismayed to read in the May 7 edition that the Dillon Town Council is moving forward with converting its free town parking lots to paid overnight spaces, possibly mid- to late summer, at $10 to $20 per night, which for residents would be $300 to $600 per month to park. The mayor and a council member suggested charging $1,000 to $10,000 for a year’s permit — outrageously expensive! This will especially hurt Dillon’s seasonal and year-round renters who work in Summit County, as many older complexes have limited parking, and residents have been given town-prepared maps and relied on the free spaces for decades. This unexpected and imminent cost on top of their rent could likely be unaffordable, causing them to move out.

Summit County is short on employees and employee housing. Dillon should help this situation and not hurt it.

Dillon should leave the parking free for property owners, residents and long-term renters. This would still provide additional revenue from short-term rentals while not harming the affordability for residents and long-term renters. There are also other ways for Dillon to raise revenue from the short-term rentals. Apparently, the council is not thinking about the impact on the locals who are there long term and is violating parts of the Town Core Vision Statement by potentially decreasing year-round residences.

Part of the parking problem is due to the town having approved complexes with limited parking spaces in the 1970s, when families would visit with one car.

For example, my complex has 27 parking spaces for 25 units with one to three bedrooms. About one-third of these units are rented long term to young Summit County employees who are valuable to the community and need to park nearby. Other complexes have parking shortages, as well.




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