The Democrat-Gazette's Jake Sandlin followed up this morning on a piece of news broken by Argenta News and mentioned here yesterday. It is the practice of setting aside free public street parking for customers of Valentine's, the restaurant in the NLR ballpark, and charging others going to games to pay for the space. Argenta News' Scott Miller had recounted getting hounded for money Tuesday night when he tried to use one of the street parking places.
Sandlin's article about what he found Wednesday -- efforts to collect parking fees along Willow -- said it appeared to be nothing more than scam of a rogue homeless man. (He didn't credit Argenta News by the way, as is the custom on the many tidbits that Scott Miller digs up on his neighborhood website). Sandlin mentioned in passing a theory that at least some of the valet parking for Valetine's is not public parking, but spaces on ballpark property. It looks like public right of way to the naked eye. Nonetheless, that doesn't explain cones lining BOTH sides of Willow Street, the professionally made paid parking notice in the middle of the street, clearly applying to both sides, and other factors. I asked Scott Miller for his reaction to the article:
Keep in mind, Jake went to the game yesterday, which was held at 11 a.m. Valentine's was not open. I tried to park on the street next to the Municipal League Tuesday night and the guy who wanted the money was wearing a black polo shirt with a gold pocket imprint just like all the valets working at Valentines. The same guy was parking cars for Valentine's later. Where does a homeless guy get a dozen or so traffic cones and portable sign anyway?
I plan on going to the game Friday and getting photographs of the guys collecting money and hopefully getting my car towed. 'Till then it's just my word against theirs