A message on future car parking arrangements from Waverley’s Deputy Leader – Paul Follows.
PARKING CHARGES in WAVERLEY
One of the things I think make a good councillor is the ability to stand up and take the questions on the subjects that people don’t like as well as the ones that they do. You elected me to be upfront with residents.
This is one of those times.
After 96 days of free parking, WBC will need to resume parking charges from July 1st. This is an endeavour to also try to give as much notice as we could.
Not all councils stopped enforcement of car parking charges during Covid, but we thought it was needed to help get through this crisis. Many more that did stop, resumed as far back as April.
I am monitoring this post and will do my best to respond to questions as they come up.
Ultimately, we wanted a clear month (alongside the Town Council measures) to support the restart of the high street from the original government date of June 1st before we brought them back.
However, this moved to the 15th of June. The borough must operate services (such as waste collection) and £100,000 per week of revenue loss is not sustainable (especially as we have been told not to expect any further Covid funding from the Government – even though what has been given to local government has not been anywhere near enough).
We also need to absorb the cost of ensuring that the Surrey NHS and Care Worker Permit scheme can be continued as long as is needed (this is a cost to the council).
I would also just say – considering all the financial pressures, if you have suggestions or think we could do something differently here please tell me how and I will do my best to respond.
We have kept the Chambers of Commerce in the loop at all times in this matter and we have essentially given 2 weeks of free parking to support the high street restart. This is the best we can realistically achieve in the financial climate.
Worth keeping in mind that WBC keep just 4p in the £ on business rates (the majority goes straight to Central Government). GTC get 0 from business rates.
Full Press release below.
The Waverley Web believes that the borough council has been more than fair with us all and we have heard from NHS workers how helpful they have found the measures.. However, as with all things – even hopefully, the Coronavirus emergency – all things come to an end.
So on behalf of our followers. Thank you Waverley Borough Council for (a) giving us the breathing space on car parking (b) keeping us informed every step of the way and (c) asking us for any suggestions we may have in the future. As for the miserable 4p in the £ you keep from business rates – ‘disgraceful.’
May we also suggest that when all the number crunchers get back to work in the Finance Department at Waverley – they tell us all – exactly how much money filtered down from the Government to the grass roots e.g. borough district and parish councils during the emergency. Because we have a full transcript of Housing Minister Robert Jenrick’s press briefing when he pledged that No council would be out of pocket due to the pandemic?