For months, Deep Ellum’s restaurants, retailers, bars, and clubs have lost business as a result of unscrupulous booting. Visitors to Deep Ellum would pay their parking fee, then return to the lot to find that their car had been booted and that it was going to cost them $150 to have it removed. Many vowed not to return. This is bad for our small business owners, bad for a struggling Deep Ellum, and bad for our city’s economy.
I am pleased that today the council passed an ordinance to regulate booting and eliminate what has been both a threat to our small businesses and an unfair (and expensive) penalty to paying parking customers. The ordinance will require parking lots that choose to boot to provide a receipt to their customers.
We were able to gain widespread council support by creating a phased implementation plan. For parking lots that choose to boot, the ordinance will be phased in as follows:
- As of Jan. 1, 2010, all parking lots in Deep Ellum must provide receipts.
- As of July 1, 2010, all parking lots outside of Deep Ellum that charge $5 or more (or $1 or more per hour) must provide receipts.
- As of Jan. 1, 2011, all other parking lots must provide receipts.
The ordinance was approved by a vote of 14 to 1, with Ann Margolin voting against.