Evening parkers getting ticketed in Athens

ATHENS, Ga. (AP) An official of the Athens Downtown Development Authority says parking tickets for metered spaces are being issued in downtown Athens at an average of 95 a day after 6 p.m., a sign that many people don't know the meters' hours have been extended.

Since July 1, meters in downtown Athens operate until 10 p.m. Parking now costs 75 cents an hour instead of a quarter.

The Athens Banner-Herald reports Executive Director Kathryn Lookofsky says the first ticket will be forgiven for those unaware of the change.

Authority Chairwoman Erica Cascio suggested letting people with Clarke County tags park free at metered spaces, but the idea was rejected. She says the additional parking cost is hurting bars and restaurants.

A new downtown parking deck is scheduled to open next week.

Information from: Athens Banner-Herald, http://www.onlineathens.com