Joe Behan - Independent Councillor - Wicklow County Council

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Parking Charges in Bray

Archive Statements > 2014

Bray Town Council grabs €1million from
People of Bray in parking charges.

I was shocked to read in the Bray Town Council Budget for 2014 that the Council expects to raise
1,019,000 in income from its paid parking scheme this year.

This is
20,000 more than the amount expected in the Budget of 2013 although in fact they actually took in 999,251 last year.

It is incredible that in the worst recession for 30 years the local Council persists in charging people for the privilege of shopping in our town.

It is very clear that the town is losing the battle to attract shoppers and while some positive initiatives taken in recent times may help, nonetheless we are tying our own hands behind our backs by insisting that shoppers must pay out more than
1 million for parking in Bray.

I am familiar with all the usual arguments for the scheme and I am still extremely sceptical. When the restricted parking scheme was first introduced, I clearly recall Council officials stating that the scheme was not designed to be a cash cow but that is exactly what it has turned out to be. The Council seems to have decided that it is essential that people must pay for every minute they park while shopping in our town. This approach is completely wrong in a time when the traders in Bray are desperately trying to attract customers.

I suggest that the Council re-thinks its strategy before it loses its powers to Wicklow County Council.

Why not introduce a free 2 hour slot in the car parks? This would have the effect of allowing customers to do their shopping for two hours without the hassle and expense of paying for parking for that time. If a person wanted to stay longer they could then pay a small charge which could be increased steeply to prevent all day parkers holding down spaces.

I believe that this initiative would complement the street and pavement works currently underway and should at least be tried in these last few months of the Council's existence.
It could lead to more people shopping in Bray, more business for the traders in Bray and ultimately more jobs for the people of Bray. Why not try it before it's too late?

Joe Behan
Independent Candidate for Bray, Kilmacanogue and Enniskerry.

Serving the people of County Wicklow since 1985 |

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