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Parking Scheme Returns

Added: 9 November 2006

It would appear that Labour administration of Brighton & Hove City Council seem intent on forcing through the plan for two huge zones in the city centre. At the Environment Committee meeting on 14th September the plan to change the existing 8 zones into two huge zones on the centre of the city was stopped by an amendment supported by the Greens, the Tories and the Lib Dems.

The amendment called for officers to go back to the drawing board and come up with alternative solutions for the zones, and in the two months that have followed people like Director of the Environment Jenny Rowlands have done a stunning job. The bold new plan consists of ... er .... two large zones for parking in the city centre. Such vision! But this isnít just the same plan that was thrown out previously .... oh no. It now includes a review after 6 months. Wow.

Oh dear ... I really have to be careful what I write, Miss Rowlands seems to spend her spare time threatening small local newsletters with legal action if they print unfavourable stories about the council!

So how are they trying to force this through again? Well it would appear Labour party agitators have been busy trying the stir up trouble for other parties in the areas where residents want new parking schemes by claiming that councillors that voted against the central parking review have delayed all of their schemes by years. In fact Councillor Craig Turton even turned up at a West Hove meeting and took the opportunity to point out that Councillors Garry Peltzer Dunn and Ted Kemble were causing the delay for residents. Subtle, Craig ... subtle. In fact this is complete bull spun by the likes of Gill Mitchell and Jenny Rowlands to try and put Ė as so aptly described by Councillor Paul Elgood Ė a gun to the heads of all the councillors who along with the majority of residents oppose the scheme.

This is very reminiscent of the Brighton Marina skyscraper proposed by Brunswick developments. It was rejected by the planning committee, and that didnít please certain people. Next thing everyone knows itís back! However this time two of the Labour rebels were forced off the committee and replaced with members whose blind devotion to party politics long ago eroded any critical faculties that might have once existed Ė and of course it was passed.

Returning to the matter of the central parking review, one also wonders why all mention of environmental impact was missing from the previous report. Many, including myself, had written objecting on the grounds that these two huge zones will create intrazone commuting with people who live on the outskirts being able to drive their car and park in the town centre, where previously they may have walked or even taken the bus. It is clearly just a money making exercise, with residents of the city centre suffering.

Anyway, today we are getting another amendment by the Green party proposing that the central scheme is put on hold, whilst all the other wards are given the schemes that the residents actually want.

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