It will be the death of meter fairies.
Starting Monday, Santa Monica will start installing at all of the city's more than 6,000 parking meters high-tech sensors that are designed to wipe out the ability to continuously "feed" the machines.
Ground sensors will communicate wirelessly with the meters to shut off when a car has parked beyond the posted time limit and to reset when a car leaves the space.
This could make enforcement easier for the Police Department, and the city's Finance Department has forecast revenues to grow $1.7 million for the first fiscal year that the new technology, which allows drivers to pay with credit cards, is expanded across Santa Monica.
Parking meter sensors were first installed on selected blocks in downtown in March 2011 under a pilot project to replace old coin-only parking meters.
The city announced Tuesday that more sensors will be installed in the next year citywide, beginning Monday in downtown locations. Parking will be restricted for up to one day at up to 100 metered spaces per day during the installation.
"The sensors are part of the new credit-card and phone-enabled parking meters installed over the past several months," said Don Patterson, assistant director of Santa Monica's Finance Department.
The projected revenue increase will come primarily from the use of credit cards, Patterson said. "The average credit card transaction is $1.18, as compared to the average coin transaction of $0.51," he said.
The meters equipped with sensors will alert customers by displaying a message, “max time exceeded,” and will not accept further payment.
The meters "require all customers to pay for all of the time they park at the space ... encouraging the parking space to turn over," Patterson said.
“Feeding” a meter beyond the posted time limit is illegal under city codes. Violaters are subject to a $64 citation.
The new meters are solar-powered and will keep the city from throwing away more than 8,000 AA batteries a year. Customers can pay with credit card over the phone and opt to receive text messages when the meter time is about to expire, and they can remotely add more time up to the posted time limit.
Correction/clarification: An earlier version of this story stated that increased revenue would come from parking citations. City officials say revenue will grow as drivers pay with credit cards.