Barnet's Conservative councillors voted to hike up all day car park charges by 20 per cent at last night's Environment Committee (7 Nov), and have delegated the final decision as to where this should apply to officers, rather than take the decision themselves.
The report on fees and charges says "Charge for All Day parking in chargeable Car Parks (Note -All other car park charges to remain as is – only the All Day charge to increase)", and the increase is shown as 20% from £5 to £6.
Council officers at the meeting said that the increase would apply where commuters parked and there was high demand, and in areas where nearby station car parks were more expensive and the Council all day charge could be raised and still be competitive.
Labour councillors queried which car parks it referred to, as not all ‘all day charges’ are currently £5. For example, Lodge Lane is only £3.50 and that charge applies to anyone parking for over 3 hours, not only ‘All day’.
Conservative Childs Hill councillor, Peter Zinkin, then moved an amendment that the all day parking charges in any car park could be increased by 20% and the decision on whether to do this would be delegated to officers.
Labour councillors voted against the whole report.
Labour's Environment Spokesperson, Cllr Alan Schneiderman said:
“Barnet Tories already have a poor record on parking, this shocking proposal to hike up parking charges risks harming our town centres and high streets even more. Not all people paying the ‘all day’ charge will be commuters, many will simply be shopping in local businesses or enjoying cafes and restaurants.
"And to delegate the final decision about which car parks will be affected to officers, rather than take the decision themselves, lacks accountability and feels cowardly."
- A link to the Environment Committee fees and charges schedule can be found here (see p6): http://barnet.moderngov.co.uk/documents/s43261/Appendix%20A%20Fees%20and%20Charges%202018-2019_new%20easier%20to%20read.pdf
- A list of Council car parks: https://www.barnet.gov.uk/citizen-home/parking-roads-and-pavements/Parking/car-parks.html