Suppose for a moment that you could create a device, sort of like a parking meter, that took credit and debit cards and maybe pay by cell, and had a sensor that knew when there was a car in front of it.
Once the device was in place, you set the rates so that the first hour or two was a low amount (a buck or so depending on the stores in the areas and the type of rates that were necessary.) Then the third hour was say $20, the fourth hour was $40, and the next hour was $60 and so forth.
Now When the person swiped their card, you remembered it until they left and charged the card the amount due. If someone parked and didn’t swipe a card, the meter called you and told you to come and tow them or give them a substantial ticket.
No enforcement (except the people who didn’t swipe, and the cops could do that as there would be so few), no cash, no ticketing, no collections, zip.
The rates could be a sign on the meter. People would argue “what about people who don’t have credit cards? — There are places in London where you can’t park unless you have a cell phone. You can’t rent a hotel room, get a rental car, or do one of d dozens other things without a credit card. Why not require one to park?
If they paid by cell, they could be notified by text the amount of their bill, if they paid by CC, it would be on their monthly statement. People who didn’t have either could purchased cards from the city for certain amounts and recharge them as necessary.
The meters could be simple as I don’t think they would need a display, just a red and green light.
Local employees would be kept out by the ascending rates and the alert if they didn’t insert a card. If they moved their car every couple of hours, it would be the same as it is now.
If a person parked all day, they would most likely only do it once.
OK, Brandy, what’s wrong with my approach.