The council share this latest news. Ed
Island residents and businesses who have unauthorised access to their properties across council car parks are being asked to pay an annual fee to continue their use.
To create a standardised and fair approach they will be asked to sign licence agreements to carry on, with residents paying an annual charge of £100 to £200 and businesses of £200 to £1,000. Charging a fee for access is a usual commercial practice.
Over 200 properties accessed via IWC land
An audit of 75 council car parks has revealed that around 200 properties have created or inherited a pedestrian or vehicle access which doesn’t have lawful consent.
In some cases there have been health and safety concerns.
The new annual fees won’t apply to those properties that have an established legal right to access council land. There are also some properties which already have a formal agreements and are paying.
Safe, fair and consistent
Deputy council leader, Councillor Stuart Hutchinson, said,
“This move is about being safe, fair and consistent on behalf of all Island residents and council tax payers. It will ensure that those who have given themselves or inherited unauthorised access across council car parks will pay a fair contribution.
“We will deal with this issue fairly and properly and if an access is no longer needed or used it will be sealed and no charge applied. We will help with payment terms for those who find difficulty in an advance payment.”
Letters are being sent to all affected properties notifying them of the new arrangement and what they will need to do to maintain access.
- Letters are being sent to affected properties this month (January).
- The new access licences would be for three years, with the fee payable annually in advance.
- The fee will be based on an independent valuation, and will depend on whether it is residential or commercial and vehicular or pedestrian.
- All accesses will be checked to ensure they are of an acceptable standard and health and safety compliant.
- If a property is sold, the new owner will need a new licence.
- Ward councillors have been notified of the new approach which may affect some of their residents.