A new parking permit scheme by Gloucestershire County Council will require businesses across Gloucester and Cheltenham to log in every four hours. The Local Democracy Reporting Service explains that the digital record will assist them in identifying misuse and relieve the pressure on areas that are congested.
Local businesses have reacted in dismay and outrage at this new proposal, as it means they are required to revalidate their permits several times during the day.
A business owner pointed out complaints that if one misses a time lost, they may risk being fined, and be unable to register their vehicle for the rest of the day.
Local businesses claim that they were not consulted on the sudden changes. Kevan Blackadder, who runs the Cheltenham Business Improvement District (BID), representing companies in the area, says, “We do not understand why it has come so quickly. The last thing that businesses need is changes that cause trouble. But to send a letter without any prior warning to businesses who are trying to maximise their profits seems to be shortsighted.”
Currently, the system only requires business owners to pay for a year and display their given permit in their vehicles. A spokesperson from the council explains that they are working to make parking easier and more efficient with the new changes, ensuring that the technology makes parking functional. The council says that organizations that have paid for parking permits need not pay for another one.
The permits are planned to go digital on November 1.