CONTROVERSIAL parking proposals look set to be rubber stamped by the Isle of Wight Council.
The proposals, if approved as recommended in reports published today (Friday), will see chargeable hours in the majority of council car parks and on-street-parking meters extended from 6pm until 8pm.
The plans, which sparked a storm of protest, will also result in free afternoon parking being scrapped in Cowes, Sandown, Newport, Shanklin and Ventnor, along with free parking at The Heights, Sandown, and the Medina Leisure Centre, Newport.
However, free parking at the centres will be available for three hours for One Card holders.
Other changes being recommended for approval include:
1) Introduce long-stay 'Pay and Display charges at Appley, Puckpool, Carisbrooke, Newport Harbour, Seaclose Recreation Ground, Pier Road, Seaview, the Broadway, Totland, Totland Esplanade, Brannon Way, Wootton and Blackgang Viewpoint.
2) Scrap half-hour parking at Moa Place, Freshwater.
A report recommending the changes is due to go before the IW Council’s ruling executive at its meeting on July 7.
It is estimated the new charges will generate an extra annual income of £256,000 for council coffers. The authority is facing a £28 million budget deficit over the next three years.
A total of 543 valid objections to the proposals were received by the council during a consultation period which ran between May 9 and June 6.
Executive member for resources Cllr Jon Gilbey said: "We completely recognise the issue of car-parking charges can be a very emotive issue, but at the same time, the council is facing increased costs in its highways and transportation budget and has not increased its car parking charges since April 2008.
"We have tried to reduce the likely impact on individuals with the introduction of a new parking permit, which at £295 represents very good value — especially if purchased by monthly direct debit.
"Full consideration has been given to all valid objections, petitions and comments received as part of the consultation. Details of the consultation, the analysis of the responses and the recommendation will now be considered by the executive.
"This was a very detailed process and fair and proper consideration has been given to the range of valid responses received."
Details of the recommended changes to parking charges and the consultation process can be viewed via the link to the report: http://www.iwight.com/Meetings/committees/Executive/7-7-14Paper%2OB.pdf