By Jon Delano

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Five Pittsburgh city council members said they would introduce legislation next Tuesday to stop enforcement of parking meters — citywide — at 6 p.m. for the rest of the year.

That would repeal their earlier approval of a plan to enforce meters in certain neighborhoods until 10 p.m.

Council says the city’s parking authority has not yet turned over any extra meter revenue to the city’s pension fund, undermining council’s reason for raising rates and expanding enforcement in the first place.

Meanwhile, City Councilman Bill Peduto says some of the rules that went into effect earlier this year are being incorrectly enforced, including a long-standing protocol with respect to churches and synagogues.

When Virginia Cornyn left Saturday Mass at the Oratory, a Catholic church in Oakland, she had a rude awakening to the city’s confusing parking rules.

“There was a meter maid out here ticketing all the cars, and it was so upsetting seeing a lot — especially senior citizens — getting out of their cars looking at the tickets, people really getting upset,” Cornyn told KDKA Money Dditor Jon Delano.

For years, church and synagogue worshipers did not worry about parking meters.

“I have never heard of putting money in a meter to go to church.”

After posting a warning sign on the church door, church manager Nancy Lepore says she got the run around at the Parking Authority.

“These were their words: ‘That we did not take into consideration church facilities when we instated the new meters, times, and fares,’” says Lepore.

Peduto says in some areas the Authority is also over-charging tickets — writing $30 tickets instead of $20.

“My office has been inundated by people parking in the South Side, parking in Squirrel Hill, parking in Shadyside that have been getting $30 tickets.”

Here’s another problem on Craig Street — one hour parking limits — as Josh Oswald of Bethel Park discovered when using his quarters.

“I’m going to an interview right now and I don’t know if that’s going to take more than hour. It’s kind of awkward to interrupt the interview and say let me go feed the meter.”

Turns out the one hour limit is illegal.

“In areas of the city outside of downtown, however, the city code stipulates that parking shall be made available for no less than two hours,” Peduto says. “But in some areas of the city, we are not in compliance with that law.”

Whether you are a parishioner trying to attend a religious service or a shopper who wants to use the neighborhood business stores, the unfair and unequal application of these parking rules is creating a headache for a lot of people.

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