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AFTER CITY SCREWS UP PARKING YET AGAIN, YOUR BEST BET IS TO BUY A PARKED CAR

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BY DAN VALENTI

PLANET VALENTI News and Commentary

(FORTRESS OF SOLITUDE, WEDNESDAY OCT. 12, 2016) — City officials who brought back metered parking justify it by citing the public meetings held a couple years ago.

You know how that exercise goes in Pittsfield.:

  1. The Suits want a public policy changed, irrespective of the benefits to the city or the cost to consumers and taxpayers.
  2. The politicians go to work at the behest of their masters.
  3. They call “public meetings,” most often at times and places inconvenient to citizens.
  4. Sometimes these meetings are illegal.
  5. The effect is to rig the meeting to suppress true public input.
  6. When a handful of supercitizens show up address the board, commission, or committee, they are marginalized if not ignored.
  7. The measure passes, and the city’s “leaders” crow about how everything was done “above board.”
Welcome to “democracy,” Pittsfield style. THE PLANET calls it “demoncracy”

Pittsfield, Madame Mayor, Ain’t Lake George or Hyannis

At-large councilor Pete White and others shamelessly offer the “we had public meetings” defense. Their second line is to liken downtown Pittsfield to Lake George, Northampton, Hyannis, and other cities that have metered parking. This is the “Denial Approach,” a linchpin attitude that insists against available evidence that downtown Pittsfield is alive and well, a veritable hotspot of activity, life, commerce, vibrancy, and dynamism. In fact, as any visitor fast realizes, a trip “upstreet” guarantees a maddening experience of traffic delays, litter, dust, inching traffic, mass confusion, no parking spaces, ugliness (epitomized by electrical boxes uglified by amateurs who “Know Someone”), jaywalkers, and the presence of the walking dead.

Commentators on THE PLANET have given the best explanation for the installation of parking kiosks, with prices ranging from 50 cents to $3 an hour: City officials are doing it to show they have you by the short hairs. They’re doing it because they can.

THE PLANET can already hear the sniping of city officials, who will point out that the most the city will charge for the “privilege” of parking downtown will be $1 an hour. That’s technically correct, but we point out what no other local press outlet has done, namely, that when the mayor’s office introduced the plan, it said $1/hr. would be the highest rate “for now.”

“For now.”

In other words, once the meters get installed this month and the kinks come out, the rates will jump.

And by the way, you better have a sock full of quarters with you, because the Pittsfield system will not accept folding money — just to make it that much more inconvenient. THE PLANET can tell you of one vibrant city with metered parking, Syracuse, New York. In Syracuse, you find a city that has successfully reinvented itself in the same time frame that the city of Pittsfield has nosedived. Whether it’s downtown, Armory Square, or on campus at  glorious SU, in Syracuse you will find activities and destinations that justify meters. Oh, and Syracuse’s kiosks take folding money. It’s called convenience.

Lockstep with Nazi Stormtroopers

“We’ve Got the World By the Kisok” is that wonderful joint production brought to you by Pittsfield’s corner office and the city council, marching as lockstep as those Nazi stormtroopers in grainy footage from a mid-30s party rally. It was Mayor Linda Tyer’s idea to put metered parking along that long death march between South Street at the Colonial Theater to Berkshire Medical Center. The council, in a 10-0 whitewash (Lisa Tully not present) approved. The law firm of Morandi, Caccamo, Connell, Rivers, Krol, Simonelli, White, Marchetti, Amuso, and Mazzeo went along like whipped puppies, providing Mary Jane and Joe Kapanski zero representation and even less leadership.

So how should a city like Pittsfield handle parking? Here’s how you don’t handle it:

  • Accept state’s millions and the fine print that goes with it (like accepting druggies and gangsters)
  • Tear up downtown for four years straight.
  • Make sure the re-design eliminates 30% of the existing parking spaces.
  • Lose more parking by allowing a private company (Hotel on North) exclusive rights to six on-street spaces.
  • Charge for parking at a destination that most of us want to avoid.

Pittsfield has enough parking spaces. It doesn’t have enough leadership. Meanwhile, take Henny Youngman’s advice. If you want to solve the problem, but a parked car and leave it there.

—————————————————————————————————–

“If you don’t know, the thing to do is not get scared but to learn.”Ayn Rand

“OPEN THE WINDOW, AUNT MILLIE.”

LOVE TO ALL.

The views expressed in the comment section or opinions published within the text other than those of PLANET VALENTI are not those of PLANET VALENTI or endorsed in any way by PLANET VALENTI; this website reserves the right to remove any comment that violates its Rules of Conduct, and it is not liable for the consequences of any posted comment as provided in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act and PLANET VALENTI’s terms of service.

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mi
mi
4 years ago

Buy a Meter.

Discreet Cat
Discreet Cat
Reply to  mi
4 years ago

Build it and they will…Charge you for Parking.

heh heh
heh heh
4 years ago

I thought it was going to be $3 an hour near the hospital. Can you use a debit card? Will someone shovel the snow away so I can get near enough to put my money in or will I have to climb an ice hummock to make my car legal? Will Mr Stanley validate my parking if I spend 10 bucks for a large popcorn?

The School Committee
The School Committee
4 years ago

Covanta did not ask and other users of its plant to give them cash….just pittsfield who produce 15 %….B Clairemont seemed unaware of the use of the facilities by percents…..there fund is used as a gift fund for each mayor…..Berkshire museum got 500k from Roberto for air conditioning….we

mi
mi
4 years ago

And a copper roof.

H
H
4 years ago

Rumor has it Maxy got another mil over at Titonic, true.

Pat
Pat
4 years ago

Did anyone hear the clip of Michelle Obama from 2008 and what she says about the Clintons? Go to http://patrioticviralnews.com/articles/remember-when-michelle-obama-told-women-voters-this-about-hillary-clinton/.

Want to get a good look at two-faced Michelle Obama?

“A quick rewind through the video archives shows that in 2008, when her husband was running against Hillary Clinton for the Democratic presidential nomination, Michelle Obama struck a low blow against Clinton, telling the crowd at a women’s fundraiser on Chicago’s South side that “if you can’t run your own house, you certainly can’t run the White House!” — referring to Clinton’s inability to control her husband Bill’s infidelities — both within the White House and outside it.

Flash forward to 2016, and Michelle Obama is campaigning for Hillary as if they’re the best of friends and she never said any of those things. Talk about hypocrisy!”

Halo
Halo
4 years ago

How does a politician accumulate 250 million in income when she is just that, a politician. Did she hit the lottery while helping families and children.

Miss Vito
Miss Vito
Reply to  Halo
4 years ago

Mike Bloomberg former N Y Mayor is worth 44 Billion, Billion, Killery has a ways to go.

Anyone see the Councill Meeting last night? One advocate for the Charter Schools was a student from Bart and the other advocates for the other view, was Kathy Yon and Mrs. Amuso. Both sides had contrasting views. I’ll believe what the student said.

heh heh
heh heh
Reply to  Miss Vito
4 years ago

We need to move to charter schools and away from the status quo as it is a massive failure and disservice to the kids and taxpayers as well.

the special interests are putting as much lipstick on this pig as they can but the current parasitic school system is chewing its own leg off. Time to move on and vote YES on question 2.

Mad Trapper
Mad Trapper
Reply to  Halo
4 years ago

CCF Clinton Crime Foundation in choots with Barry and Crooked Hilliary’s State department

Pat
Pat
Reply to  Mad Trapper
4 years ago

I’m just reading about that now. More corruption from that dysfunctional Clinton couple and Obama.

save gas
save gas
4 years ago

How bout nobody do any business downtown?
No need to pay big bucks to park downtown if you just don’t go there.
Say no to thugs.

Shop online from the comfort of your own home.
Free shipping….No taxes….

Its a no-brainer.

heh heh
heh heh
Reply to  save gas
4 years ago

and if it is a movie you want to watch then the mall has it all. they really do have reclining seats (not fake promises to get them)

HUndreds and hundreds of customers at the mall movies must know something good is going on

Mad Trapper
Mad Trapper
Reply to  save gas
4 years ago

I’ll still patronize Carr Hardware.

They have their own parking lot and S#!Tsfield can suck a gonad

EddieP
EddieP
Reply to  Mad Trapper
4 years ago

If you can get in with all the non-customers parking there.

Thomas More
Thomas More
4 years ago

What does Syracuse have that Pittsfield doesn’t?
An international airport, a interstate highway, a world class university, SUNY Syracuse and LeMoyne, a port on Lake Ontario as well as a crime rate that is among the highest in the nation. The Planet never mentions this. If what happened in Syracuse last 4th of July happened in Pittsfield Dan would be writing it up as a carnage and stepping off in centimeters the distance from HON.
http://www.areavibes.com/syracuse-ny/crime/

Felix
Felix
Reply to  Thomas More
4 years ago

Well you just made Dan Valenti’s case Thom!! Read the article.

Places like Newburypost, Northampton, Hyannis and Syracuse have attractions for people to want to go there. Thats when you put in meters. You dont start with a ghost town and put meters in because places like Syracuse do it. People hate going to downtown Pitts. Meters will only punish ordinary people..workers and others. The few that dare go there or have to go there for whatever reason.

You also didn’t mention Syracuse has Destiny USA the nation’s second largets indoor mall. It has triple AAA baseball and hockey too.

As for HON wasnt downtowns latest murder about 100 feet from there?

heh heh
heh heh
Reply to  Felix
4 years ago

Hard to tell about the latest murder because very little local crime is showing up in the newspaper. I wonder why. Can you say “bunker mode”?

But if you go to RAIDSONLINE.COM and go to Pittsfield you will see a scary side of Pittsfield they don’t want you to know about. And that is only part of it.

Mad Trapper
Mad Trapper
Reply to  heh heh
4 years ago

Link seems to miss ALL the Murders and OUIs

Thomas More
Thomas More
Reply to  Felix
4 years ago

I’m not trying to diminish Dan’s case. I agree with him 100%. I’m just tired of the comparison to Syracuse. The things that I mentioned the venues that you mentioned make Syracuse a fine place.However, it also has its south side and its share of walking dead. It has 4 times as many people as Pittsfield and ten times the crime.
As for the parking meters, they are a losing proposition. People are not going to use them. HON has six spaces and if you park there for 30 seconds some goon comes out of the wall to chase you away. More later. I could go on for hours on “upstreet”.

Shakes His Head
Shakes His Head
Reply to  Thomas More
4 years ago

Tourist crowds will come from all over to ride the carousel.

AV
AV
Reply to  Thomas More
4 years ago

By the time all the studies are done,machines installed, maintenance,employees to monitor, collect money,and issue tickets, and then spend more trying to collect from the ones that don’t pay . In the long run it would be more beneficial to Downtown businesses and the public to have free parking limited to 30 and 60 minutes spaces 9:00AM-5:00PM on North st. There is plenty longer term parking a block away.

Shakes His Head
Shakes His Head
Reply to  AV
4 years ago

I guess you get to wait and see?

Kate Dempsey
Kate Dempsey
4 years ago

If Pittsfield wants to tap into some un-mined gold, how about charging a “North Street toll” on those rotund citizens who get around on their Pittsfield Cadillacs (mobility scooters). Much like a salad bar, they could charge by the pound.

Of course those who truly need them to get around, would be exempt from this “toll.”

But those citizens who are scooting up and down North Street with a tankard of soda in the basket, a hot dog in one hand and a King Kone sundae in the other, will foot the bill (no pun intended).

Shakes His Head
Shakes His Head
Reply to  Kate Dempsey
4 years ago

Good thing we are in America and don’t discriminate against the disabled. If you hate this country so much you can visit Mosul.

Kate Dempsey
Kate Dempsey
Reply to  Shakes His Head
4 years ago

Torch,
Re-read my post. I said to tax those “rotund” citizens, not those in need of their Pittsfieldl Caddy’s.

Did I hit a nerve, Torch?

Zylonite
Zylonite
Reply to  Kate Dempsey
4 years ago

Seriously Kate. Karma’s a bitch.

Kate Dempsey
Kate Dempsey
Reply to  Zylonite
4 years ago

So is will-power.

Jaxur
Jaxur
Reply to  Kate Dempsey
4 years ago

Kate great post! Shakes has a problem facing reality.

Chris Cross
Chris Cross
4 years ago

Can someone explain why the $$ to Covanta wasn’t a loan and why neighboring towns that use Covanta could not pitch in ?
Also, the $$ is for a back up boiler that hardly ever used – I’m just finding it hard to believe we didn’t have a better negotiating position here…and anything Barry says is hogwash – he has no credibility – for obvious reasons –

save gas
save gas
4 years ago

Tear down all the buildings on North St, South St, East and West Streets. Pave it. Make one huge parking lot.

Problem solved.

save gas
save gas
4 years ago

But seriously….

The Hon is allowed to reserve 6 spaces on North St. for their exclusive use?
Really?
Should not all businesses on North St. be able to reserve six spaces for their customers.
Why is the city showing favoritism to only one business?
Does not this make grounds for a class action suit by North St. businesses against the city of Pittsfield?

How is this enforced? If you park in front of the Hon and do business in a neighboring business are you ticketed, towed?
Should not push this issue and get it into court, in front of a judge?
Is the city promoting unfair business practices?

heh heh
heh heh
Reply to  save gas
4 years ago

Look up “special interest”. Or “special favors”.

Carolyn Barry
Carolyn Barry
Reply to  heh heh
4 years ago

Don’t forget about their tax break.

Thomas More
Thomas More
Reply to  save gas
4 years ago

How about every business be given one space?

save gas
save gas
Reply to  Thomas More
4 years ago

Thats sounds too fair.
Besides you think the Hon would give up their other 5 spaces without a fight?

I say nobody should supoort the Hon.
But most people in Pittsfield do not anyway.
They depend on out of town victims to patronize their business. Which highlights the point that these 6 spaces are taken away from Pittsfield residents use and given to out of town users.

Jaxur
Jaxur
Reply to  save gas
4 years ago

At $350 and up per night you can be sure no one from around here patronizes Hon.

Word is that after Labor Day business at Hon is way down with a slight bump for leaf peepers. Last yr Hon lost $$ mainly because of Labor Day to Memorial day ghost town effect. Someone who works on the business side at Hon says projection is greater loss this off-season. Give Hon five years tops.

pothole
pothole
4 years ago

without any foresight the city had no choice with covanta as much as I hate the idea, it had to be done. The fault lies with the former administrations for not planning and having options for Pittsfield.

h
h
4 years ago

Therue are a lot of homeless people that have been parking right at the honey hole, not kidding, listen to the scammer.

Two Cents
Two Cents
4 years ago

After months of no one able to go near North Street without being caught in the black hole known as the big dig of the Berkshires and now parking meters providing the preamble of the mass exodus of customer based businesses out of downtown, I long for the good ole days. Remember Pipe and Package? Near the end of its long run downtown, one of its most popular items were tee shirts that read “Will the last one out of Pittsfield please shut-off the lights!” God, i wish I bought one of those…How prophetic!

heh heh
heh heh
4 years ago

I want to remind the public works dept to drain the water in the self watering planters so that it does not freeze the pipes.

Your welcome

heh heh
heh heh
4 years ago

and apparently somebody’s garage caught fire in Clarksburg and there was smoke too. the family cat was not harmed.

this is the kind of breaking news you are now getting in your refurbished Berkshire Eagle.

but if there was a gub in a school story it might wind up on the cutting room floor

Paul
Paul
4 years ago

Don’t see a reason to ever go to the Beacon. The mall has convenient free parking, very friendly employees, great spacious clean reclining seating. They play the same movies. When Stanley was begging for money in the beginning he promised to play movies like the ones he offers in Gt Barrington. That never happened! To top it off now you will have to add the cost of parking for week day movies in the afternoon. In addition figure in the North St winter parking. The city and the merchants do a very poor job with snow and ice. Except Carr Hardware I have no intention of going there.

Zylonite
Zylonite
Reply to  Paul
4 years ago

Wasn’t the Beacon supposed to be a more independent film theatre like Images? You are right. We live about the same distance to the mall so why would we go to the Beacon if they are showing the same thing? Movie theatres are a bad investment anyway. Better to wait and stream a couple months later in the comfort of your own home.

heh heh
heh heh
Reply to  Paul
4 years ago

are they still aggressive about ransacking old ladies pocketbooks looking for contraband gum or cough drops?

Rocky Creed
Rocky Creed
4 years ago

So when the city balked at Rick Scapin’s idea to put a transfer station in Pittsfield, it’s gonna cost them $560,000. By the way know it all JLO, it is now in Lenoxdale not Lee. You should know because you fought against it in Ward 5, a definite swing vote issue that got you elected to your 1st term. So I guess you cost the city $560,000 as well. Thanks.

Zylonite
Zylonite
4 years ago

Any bets on what company will now be looking for money to stay in Pittsfield?

heh heh
heh heh
Reply to  Zylonite
4 years ago

Is it that dilapidated place out near PLT on rte 20 that has morphed into a logging and firewood empire? And is that business on the tax rolls or a friend of city hall skating like Trump on his taxes?

CosbiesLadies
CosbiesLadies
4 years ago

J Low is for J LO, remember it was him who was against his Street being used as path for people to short cut. NIMBY. Low was the one who championed councilor raises (shot down) there are at least twenty others. His claim to fame was the nude bar ban and the transfer station, other than that, did nothing but vote to raise taxes for over a decade.

Rocky Creed
Rocky Creed
4 years ago

Right on Cos Lady

Painter
Painter
4 years ago

What a good way to keep people off north st put in psrking meters .

H
H
4 years ago

Don’t close Co Von Tuh get a half million out of them first, then close

Halo
Halo
4 years ago

After watching the Covanta Boss during Maz questioning ( which was excellent) his look to me was he doesn’t care if you give them our money or not….we are leaving.. Lowthrop being there, just affirms that this is a shady deal at best.

Knock Knock
Knock Knock
4 years ago

I was listening and if I heard it correctly was that the powers to be is making them upgrade the facility and that is losing money because of it. Why didn’t Covanta discuss this during the last contract? Something does smell.

Pete White is complaint about loss of jobs? Pete, you’re Mayor has told us there are over 1700 jobs available in Berkshire County, come on man!

Dilly Dally
Dilly Dally
4 years ago

Covanta robbed us without a gun. And the City save Mazzeo,watched.

Harlan Rinklenutts
Harlan Rinklenutts
Reply to  Dilly Dally
4 years ago

Post of the Day!

Dilly Dally
Dilly Dally
4 years ago

Does Covanta do business China, just curious. doesn’t Covanta get tax depreciations like the ones Trump gets, just curious. Why wasn’t Collingwood at any of the recent meetings, especially the City Council vote. Where was the Solicitor last night? just curious.

Harlan Rinklenutts
Harlan Rinklenutts
4 years ago

The taxpayer just paid Covantas stockholders 500 large.

The School Committee
The School Committee
4 years ago

I want to know how you reconstruct north street without bothering planet valenti bloggers who are always having problems downtown parking or being held up at gunpoint or when not being violated are shaking in their boots loitering down on mainstreet.
It weird that so many bloggers are afraid of terrorism on north street…they see it everywhere.

The School Committee
The School Committee
4 years ago

LeBron James said with so many players with mom and mothers in law s daughters and wives Trumps locker room talk just doesn’t happen in locker rooms.

Disreet Cat
Disreet Cat
4 years ago

Slam Dunk S C, good comments, again!