By law, Easton's new parking ordinance -- which changes the city's parking hours, the cost of parking and some of the meters themselves -- can go into effect today.
City Council approved the changes last month, and they were due to become effective 30 days later.
The reality is somewhat trickier. City administrator Glenn Steckman said he hopes to have most of the new meters in place by early April.
“We’re looking at taking down 500 meter heads," Steckman told City Council Wednesday night. "That’s not a 'you do it in a day or two' project.”
The new meters -- similar to the ones the city has placed near the Northampton County Government Center -- can take both quarters and credit/debit cards. Parking will now cost $1 an hour, rather than 50 cents per hour.
The changes also include ending free parking downtown on Sunday -- with enforcement hours from noon to 6 p.m. -- as well as longer enforcement hours on Monday through Saturday. Meters will now be in effect on those days until 8 p.m., rather than 6 p.m.
Steckman said the city will start with areas that don't seem to have as much demand for meters -- along Larry Holmes Drive and Bushkill Street -- and then move inward.
The city is also planning to put a phone number on the new meters where drivers can report malfunctions, and to replace the batteries every three months.