Claremont council delays charging residents for street parking for two years

Stock image.
Stock image.

CLAREMONT residents have been spared paying to park on their own streets at least until 2020-21 after the town’s councillors agreed to a waiver on Tuesday.

In October 2016, the council agreed to create seven parking precincts and zones where on-street parking times were controlled in its Parking Permit Plan.

The plan was developed to resolve ad-hoc solutions to individual houses’ on-street parking problems and manage new parking patterns known as “creep” – where drivers park in new streets when time limits are created nearby.

To ensure residents and friends were unaffected by the limits, it was proposed the plan include two on-street parking permits for each home, costing $75 each for three years.

The permits would allow residents and their friends to park longer than any of allotted times for the rest of the public.

Any additional permit would cost $150 for the three years, while those in apartments or other multiple-dwelling homes would be excluded.

A staff report said there was now “community-wide acceptance” that parking on residential streets had time limits and there had been requests for their “immediate” imposition.

However, the proposed fees caused disquiet among residents and ratepayers during public consultations in 2016 and 2017.

The consultation prompted 313 responses, of which 65 were concerned about the permits and any rights to park without paying.

“There’s been a lot of anxiety and angst about the introduction of parking precincts, and even more about parking fees, so I suggest a ‘softly, softly’ approach,” Cr Gill Goetze said at the meeting.

“It also didn’t pass the dog park walking test, and at various parks a lots of people were talking about the fees.”

The fees were estimated to generate about $75,000 a year.

The staff report suggested the fees could be waived for two years while the time limits on street parking were accepted by the community.

Councillors agreed, although the chief executive officer will have discretion to impose a $150, three-year street parking fee for any home’s third vehicle.