There are a few issues that may or may not be proprietary to the OCPD that I would like to raise. I would prefer you post it. Or set the stage so I can post remarks. This parking meter issue on Monday night is opening a can of worms that many do not know about but I think once it is aired there will be many comments.
1. The year-round tenants downtown are given parking permits when they sign a lease. However, in many of the older downtown locations there is not enough parking for the number of tenants in that building. The landlord is not explaining this to the prospective tenants and it isn't until they get a parking ticket which can be given every 3 hours or they get towed. It used to be you could only get one ticket per day but then the Town realized people were purposely getting tickets versus paying meters and changed it to every 3 hours. So you are looking at a young adult trying to work full-time, sometimes two jobs and their paycheck goes to the Town Of Ocean City to pay for parking (or tows). This brings up towing...and insider knowledge...but anyone having paid the fine will attest to the conundrum they encounter. I will get to towing in a minute.
The delivery drivers to the many downtown businesses also get tickets and not cheap ones! for double parking, blocking dumpsters and the meter readers wait for them to jump out to deliver their goods and then ticket them. Doesn't matter if it is a 2 minutes UPS delivery or a Sysco 15 minuted food delivery or dry cleaning pick up from a hotel. No one is safe from the jaws of the meter reader. Thick-skinned they are! This requires the delivery person to come to HQ and pay the fine, out-of-pocket and then some companies reimburse that employee and some do not. And some tickets are given to Council members who give them to the Chief to be dismissed....who gets this privilege and who does not? This all takes time away from the business and leaves a bad taste in the mouth of the innocent.
The condominiums and hotels in town are not telling their paying vacationers that the alley or the road next to them is not their property some even direct them to park there until their unit is ready! and they are getting towed (is there a phone call made when they park there? Is there a payoff? between the tow company and the hotel front desk?) Seems to me too many coincidences to ignore...the majority of the towing is done on check-in and check-out days when vacationers are loading or unloading. I had families show up claiming they had started to load the vehicle to leave and they got towed while going back upstairs to retrieve more luggage! Car seats were in the vehicles and babies formulas and the vehicle was towed! Talk about entrapment! Also, the hotels and condos are overbooking and this means not enough parking spaces and even though the condo or hotel gives the customer a parking pass to hang in their window they get towed because they were not on the property and not one of these people were informed of this.
2. Let's keep with the young adult working full-time. They have a room-mate and they both have cars but only have one parking pass because the landlord's building does not have enough parking spaces. They work opposite schedules now because of this. One comes home from work to find their car gone and they call the police thinking it has been stolen. Which the first place they (OCPD) check is the impound lot and guess what! it is there. Now, you can not get your car out for less than $180 or if a dolly was used $215. Seriously. Get this. The Town collects $25 of that fee, the Tow Company gets the rest. The Town houses the vehicle and charges $15 per day storage so if the young adult can not pay the fee until the end of the week the fee just goes up and up. There were even times when the vehicle was forfeited because the young adult could not afford to pay the fines. The Town then turns around and sells this vehicle on it auction site. Talk about a bad experience in Ocean City.
3. Let's talk towing. Last I knew there were 13 Tow Companies. But in reality only about 5 actual because one company can have multiple names. There is not a limit on applying for a license, I think they even did away with needing to be licensed to tow in OC. and I don't know why there are not more companies or who or how they get to do it but these Tow truck companies make 87% of the income and it seems there are sections, almost like territories, that are consistent every week. It is guaranteed income for these guys.