Reaction to parking charges

Angus Councillor Ronnie Proctor.

Angus Councillor Ronnie Proctor.

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The possibility of parking charges being re-introduced to Angus after an absence of 20 years has been met with concern from members of the public.

At the time of going to press on Tuesday (yesterday) members of Angus Council’s communities committee were discussing the option of re-introducing on-street charges to finance changes in on-street parking enforcement by Police Scotland.

I have seen problems in Forfar where folk have parked inconsiderately - it really is a time bomb ticking away before there is an accident.

Angus Councillor Ronnie Proctor

In his report to committee Ian Cochrane, head of technical and property services, noted the cost of the council taking on the enforcement role would be between £470,000 and £1.1 million over a five year period.

He said: “As an optional means of funding this deficit the potential of on-street and off-street parking charges has been considered.

“The introduction of on-street parking charges is potentially sufficient to meet the costs of decriminalised parking enforcement.”

It is predicted charging 40 pence for 30 minutes of on-street parking would bring the council £375,000 a year. Charging 60p an hour for off-street parking could net a further £500,00 per annum.

If given the go-ahead parking charges would re-appear on Angus streets after an absence of two decades.

Speaking prior to the meeting Angus Councillor Ronnie Priemuir businesses are struggling to survive. We could have free parking in the car parks which is something that will attract people to the town and county. I have seen problems in Forfar where folk have parked inconsiderately - it really is a time bomb ticking away before there is an accident.”roctor acknowledged something had to be done to address parking issues.

He said: “I want to hear the full debate at the meeting but my view is there needs to be some control in the burghs within the county.

“The only way to do that is by traffic wardens and we can’t afford to employ them without some extra revenue to pay for them and the only way for that is by charging for parking. That said I am very conscious Kir

Fellow councillor Colin Brown warned that, if parking charges were implemented into the burghs’ car parks, parking would become a “free for all”.

He said: “To put a charge in the car parks would be absolutely crazy. We could have free car parks and charges on the streets.

“At the moment parking is a mess. We have cars and vans parking on pavements and works’ vans seem to think they are immune.

“If charges are introduced in car parks it would be a free for all. People would use the supermarket car parks - Asda, M & Co, B & M - these car parks would all be full. The adjoining streets would become clogged up - there would be cars everywhere.”

Our Facebook pages were full of comments from members of the public, many of whom were opposed to parking charges in the car parks. They expressed concerns about the costs imposed on those who lived and worked in the town, and the local businesses.

Log on to www.facebook.com/forfardispatch and kirriemuir herald to comment.