The Senate Governmental Affairs Committee votes today on a bill that would require our nation's leaders to pay for their parking spaces. Most federal workers now pay at least $10 a month to park at the office (some as much as $45), but members of Congress, the Supreme Court and many Capitol Hill aides still get free, reserved parking.
Legislation to put the VIPs in the same pay-parking status as other civil servants is the product of Sen. Charles Percy (R-Ill.). His scheme isn't too popular on Capitol Hill -- where there are 9,200 free spots for staffers.
Percy's bill would make paid parking -- for VIPs and other ranks -- the law of the land. The imposition of paid parking on civil servants was done by presidential directive, and it could be canceled the same way.
Under Percy's bill, VIPs would pay commercial rates for their parking spaces. Like other civil servants they -- and Capitol Hill employes -- would begin paying half the commercial fee and eventually be required to pay full share for the parking spaces. Percy aides are confident the Senate will support him, but he is looking both ways before he crosses Capitol Hill streets.