Permit increase is unreasonable
SIR – I write to object to the unexpected doubling of the cost of my resident s parking permit in less than twelve months, from £26 to £52. I consider a 100 per cent increase over such a short timescale to be unreasonable and strongly object to both the c
SIR - I write to object to the unexpected doubling of the cost of my resident's parking permit in less than twelve months, from £26 to £52. I consider a 100 per cent increase over such a short timescale to be unreasonable and strongly object to both the cost and the apparent lack of consultation and notification beforehand.
I live in a close of original Garden City cottages which has no vehicular access and so do not have the option of off-road parking on my own property. In order to legally park within a reasonable distance between 8am and midnight, Monday to Saturday and ensure my own safety when returning home in the dark, I have no option other than to purchase a permit, although that of course does not guarantee me a parking space near my home. Some of my elderly neighbours and those with young children are in a similar situation.
I understand this increase, to start today, April 12, was approved at a full council meeting recently. I was unaware that this issue was to be on the agenda and so unable to object at the time. When I enquired from NHDC how I might have been notified of the intention to double the cost of my permit, I was informed that a small notice had been put in the back pages of a local paper, three weeks prior to receiving the notification of the increase, with a reminder to renew my permit today, April 12.
The fact that I was only made aware of the 100 per cent increase on the day on which it came into force is not only unreasonable, but also questionable.
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A member of the local council has stated that the current income from permit purchases does not cover the cost of enforcement and administration, hence the need to increase permit costs. I assume that there are not significantly greater costs to enforce residents' parking than to enforce yellow line restrictions which would need to be done irrespective of the permit scheme. I wonder whether other ways of reducing administration costs have been considered - perhaps adding an option for permit purchase to the council tax billing and administration could be a possibility.
I expect my local council to be proactively looking for ways to more efficiently and cost effectively meet residents' needs rather than penalising them by unreasonable increases without the opportunity for informed consultation.
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I would be pleased to hear about the development of a coherent and forward thinking policy to ease the parking situation for the benefit of residents in the area in which I live. Given the draconian increase in the cost of a new parking permit I consider that the council should, at the very least, have prioritised the parking and safety needs of residents whose properties do not have the possibility of vehicular access.
I would also be pleased to hear a 100 per cent increase to my parking costs in less than a year is indeed unreasonable.
Letchworth Garden City