Parking charges in Calderdale will stay at their current rate for another two years if plans are agreed by Cabinet on Monday – meaning no price rises for drivers.
Currently, charges are scheduled to increase next April, but, with the local economy still recovering from recession, Cabinet proposes to delay any change until spring 2017.
The suggested charging ‘freeze’ has been made possible by two factors.
First, the Council’s budget decision in February to make an extra annual investment of over £1 million to help address funding pressures in its parking service.
Second, the introduction, earlier this year, of evening parking charges in Halifax town centre and new charges at 10 car parks in different parts of the district.
These schemes came into effect in January. Amendments were passed at Budget Council the following month to remove them.
Cabinet will now consider keeping them broadly in place and instead putting the income they generate towards an overall charging ‘freeze’.
Pay and display charges would be removed, however, at the small village car parks in Ripponden and West Vale, and at Church Lane in Brighouse, where there have been particular issues with displacement parking on nearby residential streets.
Site notices would be required in these three car parks to inform local people of the proposals and give them chance to comment.
However, Conservatives on Calderdale Council have expressed their deep anger at the decision not to remove unpopular parking charges despite having found the money in the Council Budget to do so.
“We have been waiting for several months for the Council to abolish the charges that were formally removed from the Budget in February,” said Councillor Scott Benton (Con, Brighouse”. ‘When we found out that the Cabinet were bringing proposals to their meeting on July 14, we naturally assumed that these would include abolishing the evening charges in Halifax Town Centre and removing charges from small car parks across the borough as this was what was agreed by the whole Council in February.”