The following is published with Cllr. Tim Pike's approval, and provides Cllr. Tim Pike's personal response to a resident's expressed concern and questions to him regarding the new Car Park Charges on Hayling.
"My apologies if there was still confusion, but the Cabinet implemented the all year around charges at a previous meeting - this decision had already been placed within the budget, so it would not be possible to change it unless I had another source of money to replace it with. I also said ... that I consider it fair that all our car parks have similar charging regimes - every area of the Borough thinks there are good reasons for reduced or no charges in certain areas or at certain times. For the moment, the Cabinet have agreed a consistent approach to all our car parks.
However, our new meters are able to provide us with much more data about which tickets are bought when - and therefore we will be able to see what income is being generated for each meter and react accordingly. The data was published for the previous Cabinet decision, and would expect that to happen again next time it is reviewed.
[The new, ferry bus] service has been designed to reduce car journeys, and therefore any decision about car parking charges will either increase the chances of people using public transport or have no impact.
When we start to build next year's budget, there will be choices about how Council services are funded - whether through taxation for everyone, or fees and charges for specific services (e.g. car parking) - and we will have another debate at that time. There are very large costs in maintaining the coastline and our car parking, and the money has to be raised from one of these sources.We have continued to offer short stay free parking in all areas (either roadside or in our car parks) and are planning to continue to do so. This will help those people who do need to briefly visit chemists and other shops. The health centre continues to have free parking. I hope that helps explain our process, and that every resident, business and organisation will have the opportunity to influence the next budget."