Councillor Willis has continually denied that the blanket enforcement of parking on pavements and verges has nothing to do finances and everything to do with enforcement of the Highway Code. Well, the Cabinet Papers of 1st November 2010 give the game away. Page D16 of the Budget Monitoring report states that "Officers sought Cabinet approval (12July)for a proposal to extend enforcement to footways and verges with a potential additional income of £150k". This clearly shows that motorists will be treated as cash cows,taxed for parking to make up for a financial shortfall.
At the Southcote Neighbourhood Action Group public meeting Simon Beasley, transport officer talked of enforcing the Highway Code. This is fine with no arguments. However, A local Police report then went on to say that some consultation took place in the Soputhcote area and numerous examples were given of disabled people parking on a verge because they were not given authorisation by Reading Borough Council to have a disabled parking space and had to walk some distance, which they were unable to do unless they parked on a verge nearby. A number of elderly people attended and were worried that they will be hit by late night tickets as they parked their vehicles on waste ground, which is deemed as a verge.
Not only should the council look at roads but it also should widely consult as there are individual examples of why people have to park on verges.
Labour are calling for a proper consultation on this draconian proposal. However, Cllr Willis wants your money to pay for Government cuts by way of the motorist stealth tax. He cannot pin this one on Gordon Brown.