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Hannibal Courier - Post - Hannibal, MO
  • Fee dropped from city’s handicapped parking policy

  • Proposed $25 fee dropped from city of Hannibal's handicapped parking policy.
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  • Residents of Hannibal will not be required to pay a one-time fee of $25 to secure a handicapped parking sign in front of their home. On Thursday, members of the city’s Traffic Committee voted to remove the requirement from the revised policy that will be submitted to the City Council later this month.
    Adding the fee was approved in a preliminary draft of the policy that went before the Traffic Committee in September. At the time it was noted that the $25 expense would not cover the city’s cost for the sign post, paint or labor.
    According to Susan Osterhout, a member of the Traffic Committee who spearheaded the revising the city’s existing policy, members of the committee agreed to drop the fee because there was no guarantee that the person paying the expense would always have access to the slot, since anyone with a handicapped plate or placard displayed can park in a spot designated as “handicapped parking.”
    Hannibal’s proposed $25 fee was significantly less than what some communities charge, according to Osterhout. A city in the St. Louis area charges an initial $100 fee, with an annual $25 renewal fee. Her research revealed that other cities assess both initial and renewal fees.
    To be eligible for consideration of a handicapped parking zone, a person must be a full-time, year-round resident of Hannibal, have a physical disability that is expected to last at least 12 months and which limits a person’s ability to walk more than 200 feet, possess a valid handicapped license plate or placard issued by the Missouri Department of Revenue, and have a car registered at the address where the parking spot is being requested.
    Those with off-street parking available for the applicant’s use at the residence will not be considered. Neither will those seeking signs in areas where “no parking” signs are already posted.
    Handicapped parking signs will be good for a two-year period, after which time a renewal application will have to be filed.
    The policy is now scheduled to go before the City Council at its Tuesday, Nov. 20, meeting.
    According to Joyce Allen of the Street Department there are 32 city-approved handicapped parking spots in Hannibal. At one time there were hundreds until Allen began checking every two years to verify if the need still existed at the location.
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