Agenda item


To consider any requests received in accordance with Standing Orders.



Deputation in relation to item 14


Mr Bruno Carr addressed the Cabinet in relation to agenda item 14. He informed Members that he was supporting the 2200 residents, 85% of the consultation respondents, that were against the proposal to increase the charges for parking permits in the borough and whom he felt were being ignored. Mr Carr felt that, given the current economic climate, it was untimely to increase any charges.


He felt that the response to the objections in the report was weak and questioned the presentation of these objections and how the evidence had been added to support these. He continued to contend that there was greater emphasis in the document on the positive responses to the consultation rather than those objecting.


Mr Carr continued to question the principles behind the increased parking permit charges, highlighting the higher proportionate percentage increase to parking permits for more environmentally efficient cars against more polluting cars. The proposed changes were also not fully aligning to the Ultra Low Emissions Zone vehicle categories. There had already been careful analysis and assessment of the vehicles by TFL experts and scientists of low emission vehicles that were to be encouraged for purchase and use. The proposals seemed to penalise residents that had bought these vehicles.


He requested that the Cabinet Members either defer the decision for six months, and reassess the economic situation, or reassess the charges to match the ULEZ.


The Leader thanked Mr Carr for his deputation.


In response to questions from Cabinet Members, Mr Carr responded as follows:


  • He agreed that Friends of the Earth would support the aims of the decision to reduce emissions and improve air quality and he also supported this aim. However, Mr Carr felt that the percentage increases proposed had not been looked at clearly and if they had been would have been challenged as there was a unequal increase when comparing permit charge increases between electric  or hybrid cars and higher polluting cars. It was felt that if further work had been completed, at the early stage, with environmental groups, this would have provided a fairer strategy, leading to increases in more polluting cars and better connection with TFL analysis which allowed diesel cars in the euro six category to be exempt.



  • In relation to the optimal increases sought, Mr Carr spoke about expecting to see the highest percentages of the most significant increases levied against the most polluting cars and less against electric cars and hybrid models. Mr Carr felt that residents would need to understand the impact of higher polluting cars on air quality to encourage use of lower emitting vehicles. Also, he felt that there was a need to consider the whole question of emissions across parking, and road traffic, instead of solely targeting additional income from residents.


  • Mr Carr questioned the strategy of tackling parked vehicles under the guise of emissions. He expressed that improved public transport access, more cycling routes and improved highways needed to be in place before taking forward behavioural change activities.


Councillor Chandwani, Deputy Leader of the Council and Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods, responded to Mr Carr’s deputation as follows:


  • Disputed the focus on percentage increase by the deputation and instead underlined that increases were at real value cost.


  • The increase was £10 per year for a low emission vehicle, and £20 per year for a high emission vehicle, therefore it was wrong to imply that a higher percentage increase for low emission vehicles meant a higher charge. [Clerks note - The report at paragraph 6.5 advised that the changes consulted on include a £10 increase across all existing charge bands to help cover the cost of running the service - later in the meeting at item 14, the Cabinet members were asked to confirm that they had read the report and recommendations which included this information]


  • There was a tariff for where electric vehicles of £21 per vehicle


  • 54,000 residents had been directly targeted during the consultation, with only 5% responding. There had been significant efforts to encourage people to respond to the survey and the Council knew that 16000 people checked the website and 2000 had responded to object. This was a survey of 50,000 people, with 36000 opening the email and 2000 people objecting.


  • The Cabinet Member objected to the view that there was good diesel and bad diesel cars and referred to Oxford university research and other research that indicated that euro six vehicles were damaging and polluting. There was concern that the ULEZ scheme had not been strong enough on diesel cars and the wrong impression created that you could drive these cars.


  • There were 4 neighbouring boroughs with euro six in their diesel surcharging and this helped demonstrate that the Council were not out of kilter with other London boroughs.


  • Emphasised 80p to £1.20 a week increase for parking which was not significant enough to impact on people’s finances when compared to cost of increased bus fees.


The Cabinet Member stated that to change behaviours and improve the response to the climate crisis, strong decisions must be made by Councils. Vehicle owners also needed to take responsibility and purchase lower polluting vehicles. To conclude, the Cabinet Member added that when residents with parking permits purchased lower emission vehicles, the Council would lose revenue due to the lower cost of the permit.