The Conservative Group on Wyre Forest District Council do not support the Progressive Alliance’s decision to not take cash payments in its car parks as of 1st June when charges are reintroduced.
Conservative Group Leader Councillor Marcus Hart says, “This decision has been made without any consideration for those who either do not own a smart phone or do not have it with them at the time they want to park. We say this is bordering on discrimination. The Council is reintroducing charges due to loss of income, which we can understand but making it harder for people to pay does not seem a sensible way of generating income to us.”
Cllr. Chris Rogers who represents Stourport residents added, “This is a sledge hammer to crack a nut and we feel that there should be an element of free parking just to allow people to pop into town to try and give a boost to our traders. Even 30 minutes would help."
Cllr. Anna Coleman who represents Bewdley added, “We feel that this is discriminatory to elderly residents in particular and also feel that Bewdley traders could do with a boost by allowing a short element of free parking even if for 30 minutes. We opposed the Progressive Alliance’s removal of free car parking as of 1st April to no avail and that coupled with the Coronavirus pandemic is having a devastating effect on our local economy and we should be doing all we can to support it and not damage it.”
Cllr. Marcus Hart added, “Clearly there are health and safety implications of handling cash but all of the supermarkets have measures in place and there seems no sensible reason why those who have to empty the machines could not be provided with the correct PPE. Members of the public know they should use hand gel and wash hands when handling cash and touching machines and with these measures in place there should not be a problem.”