Rockford City Council will vote on parking changes at next meeting

ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) - For those who visit downtown Rockford often, you might soon see some changes in parking coming soon. The finance committee passed an item to continue working with the ABM Parking Services for the next five years.

The committee also passed a plan that could change parking fees and fines in downtown Rockford. They're recommending a two percent increase in daily and monthly parking charges that could cover the almost $200,000 shortfall in the parking fund. They also plan to increase parking fines for the first time since 2009. This increase would bring in additional fees for operating cost and improvements in the parking system. A change in street parking may also come into effect starting in 2019.

"Anyone who's visited downtown has got to the two-hour mark and had to move their car. So we are hoping to eliminate that need to move the cars and allow people to park for an hour, four hours, eight hours or however long depending on how long they plan to be downtown," said Carrie Hagerty, city of Rockford finance director.

Aldermen could finalize these items at next week's city council meeting. Assuming the city council approves the parking management contract with ABM. The company will put together a set of recommendations to see what will be the best overall fee structure in downtown Rockford along with looking ahead at the changes in street parking hours.