SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Business owners and the City Council are taking a second look a decision last fall to open the downtown core in Salem to free, unrestricted parking.

The result, say owners, is that parking spots are harder to come by these days, and they're losing business.

Residents of Oregon's capital city have long resisted paid parking, and last year a group launched a petition drive to make sure parking meters weren't installed.

The petition also eliminated the two-hour limits that were in place.

The measure would have gone on the May ballot if the council hadn't acted.

Members of the group that organized the petition drive say parking is sparse because the city hasn't enforced a law that prohibits downtown employees from parking there during their shifts.

___

Information from: Statesman Journal, http://www.statesmanjournal.com