WESTFIELD, NJ — Westfield’s town council voted unanimously in favor of lowering parking permit fees for Downtown employees from $696 to $600 per year and adding the option for employees to purchase three-month permits for $150 at Tuesday night’s meeting.

The ordinance, No. 2075, must pass a second vote to take effect.

“It’s one of the many things that’s being talked about in the Mayor’s Downtown Task Force,” Town Administrator Jim Gildea told the council at its conference meeting Tuesday before the vote.

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“We’ve heard from residents and merchants and landords that the employee permit that we actually have been selling needs to be a little more flexible,” he said, “so what this ordinance effectively does is reduces the employee permit costs and also allows them to buy on a quarterly basis.”

The three-month permits will make parking more affordable for seasonal employees, such as teens working during the summer, Gildea explained. Currently, only semi-annual and annual permits are available.