Monday, September 5, 2011


It's a holiday weekend, and alterate side of the street parking has been suspended on weekends through October, yet on this Labor Day morning, people woke up to discover that all the cars parked on the even side of the street--the north side of the long east-west streets, the east side of the north-south streets--had been studded with tickets in the night. 

I recall long and tedious discussions in Common Council Police Committee meetings about on which holidays alternate side of the street parking should be suspended and on which it should be enforced. Apparently, Labor Day didn't make the cut, but the list of holidays that did and those that didn't seems never to have been made public. Since the point of alternate side of the street parking, at least when there is no snow on the ground, is to allow the street sweeper to clean the streets, and the person who drives the street sweeper presumably does not work on holidays, it would be logical to suspend alternate side of the street parking on all national holidays. It would also make it easier for people to figure out the rules and abide by them, but logic doesn't seem to have much influence on Hudson's overnight parking regulations.   


  1. Thank you for posting about this. Each of our guests at the Hudson Merchant House received parking tickets this morning. Need less to say, it was a lively topic at the breakfast table which ended with one first time guest to Hudson saying, " I won't be returning to this town."... A parking ticket is a really lovely parting gift in my opinion... We quickly scooped up each one and offered to pay them. Happy Labor Day? -roy&mike

  2. I affectionately refer to this as the "Welcome Wagon" ordinance as I awoke to the very same ticket my first morning in Hudson.

    I fought it on the basis that a) there are no signs anywhere remotely near the parking spot explaining the law; and b) there was no mention of it in the city charter, which I'd actually taken the time to read online before moving in.

    I explained in the letter that I was a brand new homeowner here and had no idea what infraction I'd committed.

    The response? A terse denial letter with a besmudged photocopied picture of a sign on Fairview of all places, a mile and a half from where my car got ticketed.

    I understand that the city leaders have turned a blind eye to what a racket this is. They misguidedly see it as lucrative enough to perpetuate, but only because they can't count the revenue lost by this rule - e.g., loss of repeat visitors at the Hudson Merchant House.

    Beyond creating an unwelcoming climate for visitors, this dumb rule casts our city in a pathetic light. This is what we stoop to: ticketing unsuspecting visitors and new homeowners in the dead of night when no one can see...

    all to make a measly $15.

  3. This has long been a nice little revenue generator for Hudson and an irritant for locals and visitors alike. My understanding was that the alternate side parking was only suspended on Friday and Saturday nights, but Sunday nights are back to normal even on holiday weekends. There is a part of me that feels like homeowners (who are burdened with insane property taxes) should be issued a parking permit that allows us two parking mistakes per year without penalty.

    I was ticketed last year when I was unable to move the car because the locks were frozen shut. The temp hadn't broken 5 degrees in days and nothing was openings the doors. A big sign in the window begging forgiveness and asking for a pass didn't cut it with the HPD. There was so much snow and ice piled up along the streets that I'm certain no street cleaning occurred that night - but there was nonetheless an ice-covered ticket for me in the morning. Fun!