Do you pay to park at an hourly rate in Hawaii’s Green Lot? News 4 investigates.

Did you know parking in downtown Honolulu has now increased to $4 per hour?

Well, you will have to put up with it now.

Where? Along the green-lawned strip of L Street between Neal and Kinohasa Streets. The move to increase parking rates follows a decision from the HECO Board of Commissioners to raise electricity rates.

Hawaii County firefighters, who have manned the Green Lots hourly rate meter enforcement car, saw a major increase after officials announced the rates were doubling. Fire Capt. Ed Funk said the rate jumper only affects his department, but it highlights the danger of increasing prices in a large urban area.

“I think anywhere else, this would be a big deal, but having a parking garage operated at a high price, then your revenue falling due to a rate hike is pretty bad for the city of Honolulu,” Funk said.

There are also signs out at these lots that instruct drivers to park only on the first or second floor at street level.

Ryan Rice, who is contracted to park the meter cars, said these signs are supposed to be in English, but are actually in Japanese.

“Just the language I think is probably a big mistake, I mean I can understand the language better than maybe they can,” Rice said.

According to Rice, it’s confusing for drivers and they never even know what they’re doing.

“Sometimes they’ll be a little bit confused even if they just turn the key on and expect the ride home,” Rice said.

Wear and tear on the meter cars can be seen on some, but Rice said none are getting to the point where it’s causing structural damage.

“It’s just, obviously it’s a problem of not knowing how to use it, but it’s not like they want to run over and get hurt,” he said.

According to Rice, City crews have recently fixed the “park” and “pay” icons on the meter car lenses.

“Not getting bills, not knowing that all of our numbers aren’t correct,” he said.

Hawaii County Fire will continue to handle the Green Lot parking enforcement around the clock, despite the increased rates.

“I know from talking to other fire captains, they’re telling me that this is a cost they have to bear for the safety of residents in the area,” Funk said.

Click here for more on this story from KHON2 Hawaii.

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