Controversial new parking rules in Bemidji's downtown parking lots that went into effect last month were discussed again at Monday night's city council meeting.
The rules no longer allow any overnight parking by vehicles that do not have a permit. Critics say the new rules will encourage drunk driving by not allowing a safe place for bargoers to leave their cars if they choose not to drive home. And some have questioned the process behind the new policy which was crafted and implemented by the Police Department, the Public Works department and a business group called the Bemidji Downtown Alliance. The rules were put in place without being voted on by the City Council.