Conservative councillors to scrutinise ‘ill advised’ LibDem decision to end cash parking payments

The decision by Kingston Council’s LibDem councillors to stop council parking ticket machines from
taking cash has been called-in for review by the Scrutiny Committee. Despite the original decision
being forced through by LibDem councillors a few weeks ago, Conservative councillors have used the
council’s call-in process to support the concerns of local residents.

The LibDem decision would see all ticket machines changed so that they only accept payment by
card or mobile phone. Mobile phone payments incur extra charges, but LibDem councillors did not
make it clear whether some of that cost would now be passed on to those who pay by credit card

Conservative councillor Ian George said: “I voted against the proposals as Kingston Council has a
duty to provide good basic standards for local residents. They charge enough for parking as it is,
without adding extra costs and making it less convenient.

“There were lots of questions left unanswered by the LibDems when they forced it through.
Currently, there is regular fraud against those using credit cards on the parking ticket machines, yet
people are being encouraged to use it more without a guarantee that it’s safe. The LibDems don’t
seem to have properly thought through the plans, and how it might negatively affect the poorest
and other parts of the community.”

As well as voting and arguing against the changes at the decision-making committee meeting, the
Conservatives are supporting the many local residents who contacted them to act on their behalf.
(Call-in Procedures ) Previously, residents had the opportunity to call-in a council decision for review if they had unanswered
concerns, but the LibDems took away that right as part of a raft of changes made to prevent resident
involvement.” (Democracy destroyed by Kingston Lib Dems)