Tuesday, 25 November 2008

Car parking charges in Maidstone

It looks like the Tories are to start charging residents £25 for each residents parking pass and are to start charging for car parking in the Towns car parks on Sunday.

Interestingly the LibDems have put out a press release saying the the £25 residents parking permit is a 12% increase on the council tax. Not sure how much they pay for their council tax , but I have to pay about £1200 on my band C property, £25 as a percentage of £1200 is about 2%. There won't be many people paying just £200 a year for their council tax. Either their sums are wrong or they are trying to 'big up' the impact.

That said, unless the extra revenue from this rise in charges is invested directly into alternatives to car transport then it should be fought. Maidstone is the worst place to cycle in that I know of and the bus services are few and far between (except for the London Road service which is regular but expensive).

As far as Sunday car park charges go, I have similar problems with that. There are very few alternatives to driving into Maidstone on a Sunday. The buses get worse, our train service is already a branch line etc. etc. Unless these extra taxes are ploughed into alternatives they are penalising people on lower income more than those who are richer. This is wrong.

Finally, it looks like Ashford's got a radical new road system. They have paved a one mile stretch of the ring road and got rid of signs and markings making pedestrians mix with the cars. Good radical stuff, lets hope it works!

2 comments:

david.severn said...

It seems that the Tories are intent on bringing in traffic to Maidstone town, perhaps to gain parking revenue. This is the latest move with Allingon park and ride in which they are cutting down the service, only using it peak hours and with a less frequent service, I await official details. There also has been no public consultation about this very successful and popular service. Air pollution problems in the town, in the centre? oh just ignore it.

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