Free parking in downtown Chapala was reinstated as of Wednesday, July 9 when officials from the city’s Regulations Office slapped closure seals on the 21 electronic meters installed on Avenida Madero, Paseo Ramón Corona and Avenida Hidalgo.
The measure followed the city government’s official revocation of the parking service concession granted to the sister corporations MK Ideas Tech, S.A. de C.V. and Comers, S.A. de C.V. by the previous administration.
Legal grounds for rescinding the 15-year contract were established through an administrative procedure carried out in secret by the city’s top legal officers and an outside attorney hired as an advisor specializing in administrative law.
The lawyers determined that the private outfits were operating in violation of state statutes and municipal ordinances. Issues of non-compliance with various terms of the deal were also cited, including failure to provide city hall with proper accounting of fee and fine collections and setting up an arrangement with Oxxo convenience stores to receive payments for parking tickets without the government’s consent.
Public opposition to the parking system was also mentioned as a legitimate cause for nixing the pay-to-park system.
A resolution spelling out findings from the administrative procedure was approved by the city council on July 4. So far, management at the Comers office in Chapala has refused to comment on the matter.