Petition against 'disgraceful' Weston parking price hike plans launched
PUBLISHED: 08:00 01 December 2017
A petition calling on North Somerset Council to re-think plans to increase parking charges in Weston-super-Mare has been launched.
The Mercury revealed on Wednesday how the council was considering increasing both on-street and off-street car parking charges in the town.
On-street car parking charges could rise from £1.30 to £1.50 for an hour, and £2.50 to £3 for two hours.
If all the proposals go ahead, on-street parking charges would extend to Sundays, which was not included in the scheme when it started in 2012.
The council says it will have to consult further on extending the scheme to Sundays first, however.
Weston Central Ward councillors Mike Bell and Robert Payne, who sit on North Somerset Council and Weston Town Council respectively, have launched the petition.
Cllr Bell said: “This is an absolute slap in the face for Weston residents.
“They’ve been hit by on-street pay and display charges. They’ve been hit by year-on-year increases in off-street car park charges. They’ve been hit by civil parking enforcement, and the council’s heavy handed ticketing approach.
“Now they face more inflation-busting increases and charges on a Sunday. It’s a total disgrace.”
The petition is calling on the council not to introduce the additional charges and ‘instead look at fairer parking for local people’.
The council has to make £10million in savings in its budget this year, and its head of finance, Malcolm Coe admits some of its plans will have ‘a negative impact on service users’.
In his document to be presented to the executive on Tuesday, Mr Coe wrote: “Draft proposals have been prepared raising a number of existing on and off-street charges delivering potential increased income.”
The papers suggest the authority could increase its revenue by £201,000 in 2018/19 if it went ahead with all the car parking proposals.