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Residents Vow To Stop Sheffield Parking Rip-Off - Increases Between 260%-400%

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http://www.thestar.co.uk/news/residents-vow-to-stop-sheffield-parking-rip-off-1-6945392

Determined residents have today vowed to fight parking permit price hikes they have branded an unfair ‘tax’ on thousands of people - by taking Sheffield Council to court.

New action group Sheffielders for Parking Fairness claims the authority is generating revenue from residents permits, which have tripled in price in two years – despite this being banned by law.

Campaigners are now urging those affected to help them fund legal fees to seek a judicial review and have the fees slashed to £10 a year.

They hope to repeat a victory where the High Court ruled a London council could not raise the cost of permits to fund road maintenance work.

SfPF chairman Michael Marsh said: “Permit prices have risen 260 per cent for the first car since 2012 and 400 per cent for visitors’ permits – the council is ripping off local residents.”

The council says it still subsidises permits and does not make a profit.

The cost of a first household parking permit in Sheffield was £10 before the council doubled it in 2012 as part of meeting major budget cuts. It was then increased to £36 last year.

Business permit costs have also risen from £20 to £72, and books of visitor permits from £2.50 to £12.50.

Town hall chiefs say the council previously subsidised permits, but it can no longer afford to do that – and it does not make any profit from the scheme.

In our previous house we got asked about having permits because of congestion, however part of me feared once introduced it would be a licence to print money for the council and would be an additional tax. I wonder what the staff wages are for those that administer this scheme?

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I think cars offer one of the easiest routes to gathering large amounts of taxation from people, whether it is largely unavoidable fuel duties, VED hikes, or schemes to hit people without the ability to store them off public highways. On a wider point the planning system can/is used to ensure that people are often unable to free themselves from car dependency too.

Can only go so far before people stop trying though.

Edited by Joan of The Tower

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Town hall chiefs say the council previously subsidised permits, but it can no longer afford to do that – and it does not make any profit from the scheme.

Scrap it then. ;)

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When i was a councillor the council contracted out the parking meters/control/wardens in my town.The cost was £68k a year.They got in £72k a year.So local people were robbed,local business lost massive amounts of customers who stopped going for odd items etc for £4k a year.

The councils excuse was it wasnt about money it was about better control of traffic flow to help the town.

It did work in a way because traffic flow fell through the floor to out of town retail parks.

Nice earner for the private company though who really did nothing apart from cash up the coins at the bank each night.

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When i was a councillor the council contracted out the parking meters/control/wardens in my town.The cost was £68k a year.They got in £72k a year.So local people were robbed,local business lost massive amounts of customers who stopped going for odd items etc for £4k a year.

The councils excuse was it wasnt about money it was about better control of traffic flow to help the town.

It did work in a way because traffic flow fell through the floor to out of town retail parks.

Nice earner for the private company though who really did nothing apart from cash up the coins at the bank each night.

Ive heard similar...a pure keynesian make work scheme. Who cares if there is any productive output...someones got a job!

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I'm willing to bet that the residents were the ones to demand a scheme in the first place - wanting the public space of the street to be transferred to become residents only semi-private space.

The council should be, at the very least, covering costs and if it's not then the scheme should be scrapped or the prices raised. A bit of "profit" is not a problem - consider it compensation from the residents to the wider community for the privatisation of the public realm.

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Scrap it then. ;)

Exactly what I thought. They have been trying to get it on my road for the past couple of years. The problem is that some roads vote yes and it means that parking become harder on adjacent roads which voted no, therefore people (stupid sleeple!) start asking for another vote. So we get this creep effect.

I've been thinking hard if I could do without my car.

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Ive heard similar...a pure keynesian make work scheme. Who cares if there is any productive output...someones got a job!

C0bblers.

It doesnt involve govt spending to increase agg. demand.

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Exactly what I thought. They have been trying to get it on my road for the past couple of years. The problem is that some roads vote yes and it means that parking become harder on adjacent roads which voted no, therefore people (stupid sleeple!) start asking for another vote. So we get this creep effect.

I've been thinking hard if I could do without my car.

Yep, that's about the nub of it. Parking permit schemes are invariably started due to residents demands (often reasonable, if they live near a station or office block and their street gets used as a de-facto car park). Obviously it needs to be administered and paid for, so if the costs are too high either the residents pay more or they accept the end of the scheme, simple.

That said, I wouldn't be at all surprised if the council turned what started out as a reasonable service into a revenue generating scheme. Shaking down those under their authority for cash is what they do.

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At £36 a year, the council should tell them to get *****ed. That is to say, scrap anyone's monopoly, and either forbid parking altogether or open it to everyone.

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C0bblers.

It doesnt involve govt spending to increase agg. demand.

But on HPC 'Keynesianism' has been expanded to include devil worship

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When i was a councillor the council contracted out the parking meters/control/wardens in my town.The cost was £68k a year.They got in £72k a year.So local people were robbed,local business lost massive amounts of customers who stopped going for odd items etc for £4k a year.

The councils excuse was it wasnt about money it was about better control of traffic flow to help the town.

It did work in a way because traffic flow fell through the floor to out of town retail parks.

Nice earner for the private company though who really did nothing apart from cash up the coins at the bank each night.

It seems to destroy the myth that parking enforcement is done to raise revenue! Perhaps the politicians are telling the truth for once - and it is actually done to punish and deter dangerous, illegal and inconsiderate parking on pavements, main roads, dropped kerbs and pedestrian crossings?

If they don't want to deter people from using town centres, they need a flexible parking charges policy that accommodates these sort of trips. Clearly sustainable town centres will always be at a disadvantage if the planners give up endless green fields for metal sheds, with hundreds of free parking spaces, only to tell aspiring home owners there is no land for housing. Often in these developments 50% of the land is given to parking and yet there is minimal business rates liability created. Another misallocation of resources that a land value tax would start to address.

If the management contract were competitively tendered it is difficult to see how something so low risk with little value added could create much opportunity for profiteering.

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