Labour Councillors are proposing on Thursday massive increases in car parking charges in central York.
The biggest hike could come for those who shop in the City centre.
The last Liberal Democrat Council introduced discounted parking charges specifically aimed at encouraging shoppers back into the city centre.
The project saw a 20p (per 30 minutes) discounted “on street” charge introduced on Micklegate – a street where local traders had been under economic pressure. The aim was to encourage local residents to “drop in” to businesses like newsagents and hairdressers for quick purchases.
Now Labour are proposing a 50% increase in the” on street” charges for the area.
The designated “shoppers car park” at Fossbank will also see a rise. The charge, which was 80p an hour in 2011, is being increased to £1 an hour from 1st April 2013. This represents a percentage increase of 25%.
There have been no discussions with trader’s representatives about the changes which were “hidden” within a 400 page report presented to the Council’s last “Cabinet” meeting.
All car parking charges are being increased by at least 4 times the inflation rate.
Local residents who hold Minster badges – entitling them to a discount parking rate – fare particularly badly. They will have seen a 36% increase at standard stay car parks (up to £1-50p an hour) while short stay users face an increase to £2-10 per hour (a 24% hike over the last 2 years).
Elsewhere in the Council’s draft budget, the introduction of “pay on exit” car park charging has been quietly shelved while substantial increases in charges for ResPark areas are planning for 2014.