Warning time is over, now you could get a ticket for downtown - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Warning time is over, now you could get a ticket for downtown parking

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YAKIMA, Wash. -- The warning time is over, now Yakima's Downtown Ambassadors are writing tickets for people not following the new downtown parking rules.

"We're used to a couple hours of free parking without the hassles of getting a ticket. It's something to get used to, but I'm sure everybody will get used to it over time," said Belinda Cole, downtown patron.

The Downtown Ambassadors have issued warnings for the four months since the new parking meters were installed. As of Wednesday they started writing tickets, which are infractions.

"We've written about 30. And in that period we've also written close to 150 warnings and handed out other information sheets as well," said Matt Klaus, downtown ambassadors.

The Downtown Ambassadors say 20 seconds could save you $20 dollars, all you have to do is push the button take your ticket, put it in your dash and it's good for two hours of free parking.

While some are annoyed by the extra steps, one Second Street Business owner is glad there's been a crackdown on parking.

"Parking downtown was being abused by people that are working downtown and they need to move around," said Ralph Proudfoot, owner, Silver Heels.

"That keeps the parking lot open for people that want to spend their money in all the wonderful stores," said Klaus.

In addition to the parking infractions the Downtown Ambassadors have also been passing out informational materials about the new rules. They regulate the three city owned parking lots downtown. So far the new parking meters are bringing in $1,000 to $1,400 a month. This money goes to the City of Yakima treasury.

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