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Parking enforcement said hurting small businesses

Date Posted: 2006-07-22

A new system for enforcing parking regulations on Okinawa is working, but is causing anxiety among many businesses.

The program launched June 1st uses private contractors instead of police to watch for illegally parked vehicles, and to issue citations. The new system crackdown has resulted in a downturn in illegal parking, but businessmen are speaking out that it’s damaging their businesses.

Shop owners and restaurants are saying the lack of parking spaces, legal and illegal, is cutting their business. Customers are refusing to risk tickets, so are not shopping and eating in areas lacking parking.

Cargo companies say they’re feeling the impact too, as their truck drivers can no longer park for short periods in front of businesses they serve. Having to park in legal parking lots far from their customers is costing time and money. The companies say the drivers must use carts to transport goods, and that frozen foods are thawing during the move from truck-to-business in Okinawa’s heat.

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