Nyackers may soon be able to grab dinner downtown without feeding the meters.
Village officials, local merchants and residents discussed a tentative overhaul of Nyack's parking strategy Thursday night, weighing the pros and cons of .
Laird-White is seeking to shift the paid and free parking times in the village; under her plan, paid parking would be in effect from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., and 11 p.m. to 6 a.m.
Currently, parking runs from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. and costs 75-cents an hour.
"The goal is not primarily to increase revenue," Laird-White said, although the shift would add hours to the paid parking timetable. "It's to create a kinder, gentler Nyack. And businesses may be able to stay open longer."
It's a plan village merchants are willing to at least sample.
"It's a great idea to try," said Paulette Ross, who owns P. Ross on Main Street. "It's a little creative, a little weird... but it's fair."
Ross said she hears customers complaining daily about parking in Nyack—specifically about receiving tickets.
Candice Robbins, who runs another Main Street business, agreed, noting enforcement is "relentless."
"Parking officers watch and wait for meters to expires," she said. "They're doing too good a job."
Robbins suggested a five minute grace period after meters expire. Laird-White noted one is already built into the munimeters, but could be better publicized.
"[And] our parking signage is atrocious," the mayor added. "It's all going to be redone."
Other board members expressed trepidation with the new plan, however.
"We'll lose turnover," said trustee Steve Knowlton, noting someone could pull into a spot at 4 p.m., shell out less than two dollars, and stay there until 11 p.m.
's Ryan Spicer, like Knowlton, is wary of Laird-White's plan and less supportive than Ross and Robbins. Spicer, a co-owner of the bar, said Nyack shops and eateries are already competing with the Palisades Center and municipalities with free parking, like Piermont.
By making visitors pay for late night parking, the village is driving away business, he said.
For now, the concept remains in its nascent stages.
"We'll take ideas and cull them into a coherent document," Laird-White said. "Then we'll post it on the village website and continue the discussion."