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Parking problems: Manlius parking causes headache for business owners, customers

These signs have been posted all over lot 14 during the past few weeks to inform customers of the parking situation .

These signs have been posted all over lot 14 during the past few weeks to inform customers of the parking situation . Allie Wenner

— Unfortunately for Porto and the rest of the business owners, even if Magley accepts the offer or if the village is able to acquire lot 14 through eminent domain, the village will then have to go through the process of setting up a business tax district for the two blocks on East Seneca Street. 60 percent of business owners will have to agree to pay extra taxes each year until the lot is paid off.

That process will take an additional six months at least, which is something Nat Tobin does not want to sit around and wait for. He was heavily involved in the conflict 8 years ago, and is now proposing that business owners on the block form a merchants’ association.

“The village has not done very much in the past eight years to solve this problem. The Manlius Chamber of Commerce is not doing anything for the merchants. We need a group to raise awareness about the parking situation and to promote businesses in that area. We need to get more attention,” Tobin said.

His small theater has already felt the effects of Magley’s new lot enforcement. He’s already had two customers towed who told him they won’t be coming back. One woman even told him she would never come back to Manlius, ever.

“He towed a car with a handicap sticker last Sunday. We’re dealing with a person that wants to be a thorn in everybody’s side unless he gets an exorbitant amount of money. It is commercial extortion.”

The village board will hold its next meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 12 at 7 p.m. and is planning to review the completed appraisal and decide where to go from there. Whatever the decision may be, it seems that the parking in lot 14 will be a pressing issue for the village for the next year, at least.

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