Pittsburgh, PA – Mayor William Peduto issued an executive order today to announce new rules governing the distribution of unrestricted parking passes held by current and former City of Pittsburgh employees, Allegheny County employees, authority employees and others.
“The number of employees who receive these unrestricted parking passes has exploded in the last several years and it’s past time to reign it in,” said Mayor Peduto. “There are city employees who do need them, but the vast majority of those who have them now got them as favors or gifts. That is a waste of public dollars.”
The parking passes allow the holder to park at any city meter or metered lot for free at any time. The executive order requires the Chief Operating Officer of the city to develop a policy that would ensure the fair distribution of these parking passes to personnel whose job requires substantial travel and to 24-hour public works and public safety employees. It also requires the timely collection of these passes from individuals who will no longer need access to them.
The lost revenue to the Public Parking Authority of Pittsburgh from the prior misuse of free parking passes is estimated to cost the city more than $1 million annually.
WHEREAS, the City of Pittsburgh (the “City”) levies a fee on parking at designated parking meters, metered parking lots, and parking garages; and
WHEREAS, parking fees are necessary for the efficient use of parking assets in the City which are owned by the residents and taxpayers of the City; and
WHEREAS, parking revenue and parking taxes have become an important source of our overall pension funding portfolio, and the City and the Pittsburgh Parking Authority must carefully manage our parking assets and take affirmative measures to protect our City’s revenue streams; and
WHEREAS, the privilege of free parking at metered parking spaces managed by the Pittsburgh Parking Authority has in the past, for unclear reasons, been extended to several hundred employees of the City and City Authorities (“Authorities”) whose positions appear to not require regular travel during their daily work activities; and
WHEREAS, nearly 300 free metered parking passes are currently issued to employees of the City and Authorities, costing our City over $1 million in lost parking revenues every year; and
WHEREAS, for City and Authority employees who may be required to travel locally for their work, free metered parking should only necessary during business hours and while on official City business; and
WHEREAS, for the vast majority of City and Authority employees, free metered parking is unnecessary and represents an abuse of power and a breach of trust with the taxpayers of the City.
NOW, THEREFORE, by the power vested in me as the Mayor of the City of Pittsburgh, I do hereby order as follows:
1. Effective immediately, the issuance of free metered parking passes shall be limited to employees of the City and Authorities whose positions require substantial travel related to their normal work duties, including those select supervisory employees on 24 hour call in the Departments of Public Works and Public Safety.
2. The City’s Chief Operations Officer (“COO”) shall compile an inventory of all free metered parking passes currently issued to City and Authority employees.
3. The COO shall submit said inventory to the Mayor within fourteen (14) days of the issuance of this Executive Order.
4. The COO shall establish written policy and procedure to govern the practice of issuing free metered parking passes to City and Authority employees (the “Policy”).
5. Within thirty (30) days of the issuance of this Executive Order, the COO shall distribute the Policy to the Mayor, Department Directors, City Council, and the Board and Executive Director of the Pittsburgh Parking Authority.
6. Upon notification, City and Authority employees in possession of a free metered parking pass outside the parameters of the Policy, shall immediately surrender said pass to the COO.