Plans to find £300,000 savings from the cost of on-street parking enforcement in Warwickshire will be put forward as an alternative to the operation being contracted out to a private firm.
Warwickshire County Council requires Warwick District Council along with the other district and borough councils in the area to find the savings from the enforcement they provide on its behalf.
The county council had proposed to centralise the operation, meaning just one of the borough or district councils or a private firm would have the responsibility for Warwickshire’s streets.
But Warwick district councillors said this could have a negative effect on that a ‘ruthless’ enforcement firm could have a negative effect on the economic viability of town centres.
At a meeting of Warwick District Council’s executive committee last Wednesday, Cllr Michael Doody (Con, Radford Semele) , leader of the authority, said: “Should it go to a private company it would affect our arrangements badly and it would also take money from the residents here and send it out of the county.”
The district and borough councils have put together a proposal which they have said can achieve £320,000 savings.
This would be achieved by operating with the same numbers of enforcement officers but by having them based in their specific town centres with rotas designed around customer demands such as busier market days and the staff having a better knowledge of those areas in which enforcement is required at specific times.
By using this method in Kenilworth there was a 40 per cent increase in fixed penalty notices based on 2012 against 2013.
Maintenance contracts and backroom staff would be shared for a more ‘efficient way of working’
The proposals, unanimously supported by the executive, will be presented to the County Council on September 4.
Cllr Alan Boad (Lib Deam, Leamington Crown), talking in his capacity as the Liberal Democrat group observer, said: “I hope the county council will listen to this one and let’s hope they will go with it.
“There was chaos in Leamington before the parking enforcement because all of the spaces were taken up by shop workers and nobody else could park there.
“To have any regulation you have to pay for it and this is a way of doing that.”