by Dundonald Lib Dems on 30 June, 2019
On Thursday 27 June, a small Panel of councillors was asked to consider the Council’s response to the public consultation on their planned changes to parking charges.
The plans to massively increase parking charges based on where you live were introduced in January.
The Council was required to carry out a full consultation, with over 3000 individuals and organisations responding. This forced the Labour-run administration to to delay the publication of their response to the consultation, saying they needed “to take a little more time to review the representations received”.
Dundonald Ward councillor Anthony Fairclough is on the Panel.
On Thursday, he challenged Council officials over the evidence that the plans would “deliver reduced car ownership and usage across the borough”, as a means of improving air quality.
It was admitted that none of the evidence provided showed that plans to increase Controlled Parking Zone (CPZ) charges would actually encourage people to give up their cars.
When he called on the Panel to recommend the Council dropped this element of the plans, Labour councillors voted to reject this.
Labour councillors did the same over his suggestion that the Council carry out further consultation with local groups representing disabled people, older people, pregnant women and those with young children. The Council has highlighted concerns that the plans will affect certain groups of people badly, and Cllr Fairclough’s questioning revealed that no specific consultation with relevant groups had been carried out.
Merton’s Labour Cabinet will consider the public consultation and feedback from the Panel on 15th July.