Residents launch petitions against plans to charge them up to £245 to park outside their homes
PUBLISHED: 07:00 25 March 2019 | UPDATED: 08:38 26 March 2019
Furious residents have launched petitions against plans for the council to charge them to park outside their own homes.
Barking and Dagenham Council announced last week that it was going to roll out controlled parking zones to more than 100 streets starting on July 1.
Charges depend on how much pollution a vehicle churns out and the number of cars per household. Costs range from £18 all the way up to £245.
Since then at least three petitions have been launched in a bid to persuade the local authority to change its plan.
Tory McKinnon, of Parsloes Avenue, Dagenham, said: “It’s a money spinner. Why should we have to pay a fortune to park outside our own house?”
Bus driver Tory has visited 80 houses in his neighbourhood collecting signatures against controlled parking zones (CPZs).
“Not one of my neighbours agreed with it,” he said.
The council argues that the zones will deter drivers from clogging up streets and stop people coming into the borough before commuting into central London to avoid the ultra low emissions zone charge which starts on April 8.
“Why not have more traffic wardens to stop all this instead?” Tory asked.
Keari Sheehan’s street isn’t included in the CPZ plans, but she’s already asking neighbours to sign her petition in a bid to head one off.
“I was flabbergasted when I read about it. It’s a money making scheme because our borough is one of the poorest,” Keari, who lives in Bastaple Avenue, said.
She asked why the council couldn’t offer the first permit for free as other local authorities do.
“If it’s not a money making scheme, why can’t they do that?” she asked.
She urged the council to provide more spaces to ease parking problems.
However, supporters of the rollout have said the plans will stop drivers not from the borough clogging up their streets.
The announcement came after the council was slammed for giving 40 councillors free parking permits in 2018, according to a response to a freedom of information request.
A Barking and Dagenham spokesman said that the council had to charge because it needed to cover setting up, maintaining and enforcing zones.
He added: “We need to do this to ensure residents can park in their area. This isn’t about making money.
“We have done this to make CPZ zones fairer and more consistent. They will make roads safer, reduce traffic congestion and air pollution, and make it easier for people to park near their home.”