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Parking charges - We told you about it in January , REMEMBER

(May 09, 2010)
We welcome the fact that the Town Council is belatedly fighting the town's corner when it comes to Wiltshire Council's new parking charges.
BUT their unitary councillors, in particular cabinet member Keith Humphries and area board chairman Andrew Davies  should have alerted them to this possibility at Christmas when Visionforwarminster became aware of the threat. Or don't they read their own agenda papers?
We published the following story on 6 January - so why wasn't the town taking action and making noises at an earlier stage?

If vfw, made up of ordinary members of the public, can find out about these matters and let people know ,then surely our highly paid Wiltshire Council members should find out as well?

Here is the warning we published on 12th Night.

AFTER two and a half years of disruptive road works our county council is hatching another cunning plan likely to poleaxe trade in Warminster.

It involves introducing mandatory car parking charges at the same rate as those charges in Frome.
Councillors have been told that current county policies do not properly reflect regional parking policies which try to reduce reliance on cars in the name of 'sustainability'.
County councillors on Wiltshire Council have been told that the new local transport plan (LTP3) must also 'reduce wasteful competition between towns in the sub-region'
This means we will have to charge the same parking charges as Frome.
The LTP3 also need to raise revenues for the council, they have been told.
Councils raised almost 1,9 billion pounds through parking charges last year and the old North Wilts DC was particularly successful at this.
NWDC increased its income by 92 per cent in one year to 1.6 million and now no doubt greedy bosses at County Hall are eyeing up the possibility of making similar returns across the rest of the county. (Figures from the Drivers' Alliance).
VFW's Steve Dancey said: ''I'm all in favour of green transport - in fact I did without a car for over a year recently - but punishing users of small market town centres through high car parking charges is not the answer.
''Such charges simply drive custom into out of town shops (such as ASDA in Frome) where there is free parking.
''This further encumbrances market town centres and means that vulnerable and less well off people find it ever more difficult to reach decent shopping facilities as they lack their own means to get out of town.
''I think some of those who think up these plans should get out into the real world and meet real people.
''This issue is one reason I will always be an independent on the side of the public - which by and large doesn't want these charges.
''In the 1990s the Lib Dems brought the charges in in West Wilts - ending the decades' old tradition of free parking here.
''In 2003 Conservatives promised and failed to remove them completely - though we at least got two hours for shoppers - and this whole new programme is being pushed through by the Labour Government.''
If only we live lived in a democracy where the views of the public was paramount rather than our patrician rulers.

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