Parking meter fees have gone up in Tamaqua, and residents are not happy.

On Wednesday, resident Bob Haggerty presented council with a petition signed by 160 residents who live in the area of the 200 block of East Broad Street, protesting the recent increase in parking meter fees.

Haggerty requested that meters either be returned to the previous fees or removed entirely. He said currently, there is not enough adequate parking for the two high rise buildings in the area or the other residents.

The problem is being exacerbated by the closure of the East Broad Street bridge for construction. Haggerty estimated that parking a car in the area can cost about $1,000 annually now.

"Ninety percent of the people in that area are on Social Security or disability," he said. "It's ridiculous to hit the people who can least afford it. Most if not all are on some level of assistance. Do something to help these people out."

Haggerty's comments were followed by a round of applause from the audience.

The matter was referred to the parking and traffic committee for review.

Council will also consider reducing the number of members who serve on the borough's planning commission.

At its meeting Wednesday council reviewed a request from the planning commission to reduce membership from seven to five.

A letter from Tony Rodrique, the commission's secretary, indicated that due to the vacancies on the board and another member having health issues, the commission has been unable to meet due to a lack of a quorum since September.

The commission currently is responsible for reviewing the recommended changes to the Eastern Schuylkill Planning SALDO, which it will continue to do in workshop sessions.

The matter was referred to the borough's solicitor.

In other business, council:

Ÿ approved a mutual aid agreement for fire protection with the borough of Nesquehoning.

Ÿ granted a request from the American Hose Company to waive the borough's fees associated with the installation of a fire suppression system in its kitchen.

Ÿ held an executive session for personnel matters.