On the front page of today’s Telegraph there was this piece titled (in my edition) “Drivers face big rise in the cost of parking”.
According to the Telegraph:
Local Government minister John Healey said that local councils should charge more for basic services such as off-street parking, despite people in many parts of the country experiencing inflation-busting council tax rises.
In a speech to the Local Government Association, he said: “Only one in five councils are using charging to the full potential. Not just to cover costs but to shape their area.”
In a clear sign that he believes motorists should be targeted, Mr Healey said that charging more would result in “reducing congestion, improving levels of health and exercise, encouraging the use of local shops”.
It seems that Labour intends to underfund local government and is signalling that councils can use parking charges to cover the gap. Healey is using phoney greenery to cover his tracks.
This time last week we made this announcement about parking charges in Ealing:
- Pay and display parking charges that have been frozen for the past two years, will be frozen for a further two years.
- Controlled Parking Zone (CPZ) permit vouchers (priced at £25 and £45) will be frozen for a further two years. The cost of CPZ permits has not been increased for the past two years.
- Residents in CPZ areas will also receive a book of free visitor parking vouchers to use from April 2009.
- New facilities to renew parking permits online and an expanded over the phone parking payment service will also be introduced in early 2009.
- The abolition of parking charges in council car parks after 6pm and on public holidays will remain. This was introduced two years ago and has been such a success that it will remain.
- Following a review of box junctions in Southall, the box junction at South Road/Hamilton Road will be removed.
- The opening hours of the Herbert Road Car Park are to be extended by 2 hours from 10pm to 12 midnight. This is being introduced following representations from Southall traders.
It seems that the government wants to make your life harder. Ealing council doesn’t.