Post letters: Residential parking costs, Margaret Hodge MP, council wage increase and borough's great exam results

PUBLISHED: 08:00 29 July 2018

Residential parking costs are seen as another tax. Picture: Jonathan Brady/PA

Residential parking costs are seen as another tax. Picture: Jonathan Brady/PA

PA Archive/PA Images

Letters, contributions and comments sent in from Post readers this week.

Parking cost increase another tax

Gurpreet Bhatia, Barking, full address supplied, writes:

The recent announcement by Barking and Dagenham council that residential parking permit costs will be increasing with many almost doubling in charge is a bitter pill to swallow.

Cllr Margaret Mullane, cabinet member for enforcement and community safety, states that increasing charges will reduce air pollution and protect the borough’s children.

I like many tens of thousands of car owners in the borough have their vehicles emissions checked every year by law as part of my MOT with a stringent emission test and also pay the annual car tax based on carbon dioxide emission efficiency. A car is not allowed on the highway without this certification and payment of taxes ensuring it’s within government emission guidelines. Is this the third wave of now “local emission tax” on our vehicles, if so then one would expect TfL to be charged as well coming through the borough past our schools and polluting our lungs with their buses acrid fumes.

The cllr also states that the increase in price for residential parking permits will reduce the price of parking tickets. I myself do not understand the logic of this, a parking ticket should be a deterrent for a traffic infringement such as being illegally parked, driving in a bus lane or speeding and thus not reduced. What message is this sending out?

The Mayor of London introduced the London congestion zone in February 2003 in a bid to reduce traffic and reduce pollution in the heart of the city especially near schools with charges and the zone increasing steadily over the years.

Has the protection of the borough’s children from automotive pollution not been a concern or a priority to the council as it’s been from the Mayor of London’s office for more than a decade? Why the change of heart?

Many cynical people in the borough will say that with the recent unanimous vote by the borough’s councillor’s to increase their own salaries “due to increased workloads” that an increase in the borough’s revenue streams is needed to help offset this and other expenses, and parking permits are an easy option and only the beginning of times to come.

Impressed by Hodge’s bravery

David Hamilton, full address supplied, writes:

It would be fair to say that I have never been a fan of our multi-millionaire, champagne socialist Labour MP Dame Margaret Hodge.

However, credit where credit is due; I was very impressed with her bravery in telling The Dear Leader Comrade Corbyn to his face that he is an “effing antisemite and a racist”.

How very typical then that Labour should announce disciplinary action against Hodge within 48 hours, when it had not even managed to get around to disciplining Ken Livingstone after two years. Tells you everything you need to know about Labour’s priorities.

How dare council hike allowances

A Barking resident, full address supplied, writes

I think it is beyond comprehension that at a time when we are told the council is strapped for cash, that services must be cut and jobs lost, they, the council have the audacity to tell the residents of this borough that they need an increase in allowances.

I am just about old enough to remember when councillors did the job for the privilege of representing their area or for the basic in allowances (the cost of travel, postage etc). It’s a cheek to call what amounts to a salary for most people, an allowance.

When was the last time you actually saw your councillor unless it was polling day?

This money should go towards services that the people of the borough need and not to increase what to all intents is a salary under another name.

Congratulations for exam results

Leonard Restall B Ed, formerly from Barking, writes:

The report stating that exam results from local primary schools are better than the national average is a very good result for local schools, but still leaves room for improvement.

The standard attainment tests show that the results still beg the question of “how are the remaining students performing?” For example for reading, writing and maths, the result given is 64 per cent, so this means 36pc did not attain the required standard, indicating underachievement. Similarly the results for other subject areas reveal high levels of non attainment of the required standard.

There is good reason and purpose for emphasising the good performance of schools but the recognition of continuing learning achievement problems also needs to be emphasised and dealt with.

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