Stop and Shop Changes Are 'Stealth Tax'

Conservatives say new proposals are 'shambolic'

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Stop and Shop Parking Changes Explained, and

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The row over proposals to charge for stop and shop parking bays continues.

Councillor David Millican, Conservative Group Leader says the proposed changes are a stealth tax designed to bring in an extra income of £150,000* :

''Ealing Council plans to allow shoppers to extend their “Stop&Shop” parking beyond the initial period, by paying by phone. Clearly this will reduce the turnover of parking spaces and limit others’ chances of stopping & shopping.

''This proposal has been absolutely shambolic and disastrous from the start and we just don't know where it will end up. This is the worst form of ad-hoc policy making and the only intention seems to be to raise more tax.

''First the Council said that drivers wanting to "Stop&Shop", even for a few minutes, would have to telephone to park. Then they said that you would only have to do this to extend and pay for your parking time. Now it seems that this is only to be applied to some shopping roads, but not for all shopping roads. This is being sold as a “consultation”, but there has been no discussion with shoppers or traders and there is no formal consultation.

''Where there is a need for longer term paid parking in an area, then this could be provided through considered provision of separate pay and display places without affecting the high turnover “Stop&Shop” bays.

''Our first priority must be to help drivers stop and shop more easily at their local shops, not raise more tax.

''Let's be clear that this is yet another stealth tax by this Council so that they can afford to pay for their vanity projects such as unnecessary car parks where they are not needed and IT projects.

* According to the Labour Council’s published budget proposals:

“Replace Stop&Shop bays with Pay&Display Bays (retain period of free parking) - £150,000 Extra income for 2012/13”

Whats do you think? Discuss on the forum.

13th February 2012