LA officials to unveil credit card parking meters

Los Angeles city officials today will unveil parking meters that can be paid with credit cards.

Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and City Councilman Tom LaBonge will show off the new meters at a 9 a.m. news conference. About 10,000 meters around the city will be replaced with new "Card & Coin" parking meters.

The move is expected to bring in an extra $1 million to $1.5 million in revenue, according to the mayor's office.

Casey Hernandez of the mayor's office said the high-tech parking meters will be placed in high-traffic areas. She declined to discuss rate increases.

About 500 of the devices are already on-line as part of a pilot program, and the rest will be installed before July 1, Hernandez said.

Hernandez said the city will lease the "Card & Coin" meters from IPS Group for three years before taking ownership of them. Under the deal, if the revenue from the parking meters is less than the monthly lease, the city will pay the lower amount.

"We're guaranteed positive revenue because the city will never pay a vendor more than the revenue that the meter generates," Hernandez said.

The city has about 40,000 parking meters in all.

In Villaraigosa's budget proposal for fiscal 2010-11, he estimated that the new meters and long-term leases for city parking garages would help the city collect about $100 million to $150 million in revenue.

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