Vandals destroy meters

The public is asked to contact the Vernon RCMP and quote RCMP file 2015-26425 if they have any information

Downtown Vernon parking meters have taken a hit.

A significant number of parking meters were badly damaged over the weekend and the City of Vernon is hoping the public can assist by providing any video footage from surveillance cameras or helping locate missing meters or meter parts.

A total of 74 meters were damaged, with the clocks (internal mechanism that does the timing) from 72 meters broken or removed, resulting in approximately $20,000 in damage.

“I found one of the clocks under the stairs at the Elks Hall,” said Clint Kanester, City of Vernon protective services manager, Monday morning.

As of Tuesday morning, 43 meter clocks have been recovered in various states of damage.

There was no money stolen from the meters.

Most of the damaged meters were in the area of 32nd Avenue and 30th Street, as well as on 34th and 35th Street, 31st Avenue, Coldstream Avenue and Centennial Drive.

It’s the second big piece of vandalism to happen to city meters in the past month.

Three or four meters in the vicinity of Coldstream Avenue and 31st Street were also damaged, including somebody sawing off the top of one of the meters.

“It’s frustrating,” said Kanester. “We don’t know if it’s someone who is pissed off with us because of something we’ve required them to do, or someone looking for more free parking. Who knows?”

The public is asked to contact the Vernon RCMP and quote RCMP file 2015-26425 if they have any information that may help in locating those responsible.

Council policy allows a $500 reward for supplying information to the RCMP which results in the conviction of people damaging civic property.