They stand on circular black poles protruding upright through the cement sidewalk. The city of New Bedford is quenching its thirst for more money by adding additional parking meters in the downtown area. You'll find several being erected behind the YMCA building along School and Water Streets.

Meters are aggravating because you need to feed the machine quarters, or download the meter app -- which means we now pay a very nominal, nuisance bank fee. Parking meters assault our shopping intelligence and deters business activity.

Flashback to the holidays. I parked the Beat Mobile downtown, willfully, as the Mitchell administration helped biz owners by allowing patrons and shoppers to park at meters for f-r-e-e free, for two hours, through New Years. I patronized local businesses. That sparked holiday business activity. I proudly participated and lauded the administration for the effort.

Now it's an about face. I shall choose to bus or walk into downtown New Bedford rather than pay to park. I'll drive and park downtown at night or early morning, to intentionally not feed a meter. Unless it's crucial, I refuse to pay at a meter! You are most welcome to join me in this retaliatory effort.

Editor’s Note:   Brian Thomas is the host of Brian’s Beat on 1420 WBSM New Bedford.  He can be heard weekdays from 10am-Noon and Saturdays from 6am-9am.  The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.]

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