New parking charges, shorter tip hours, rise in social care charges and more, if budget proposals approved

If you haven’t had a chance to look through yesterday’s release of the draft budget proposals for next year, we share further details here, including shorter opening hours at the tip, rise in parking charges and care costs and another increase in council tax.

County Hall:

A three per cent council tax rise, paying for parking in key locations, such as Nodehill in Newport and Union Street in Ryde, and even shorter tip opening hours are among the bitter pills Islanders may have to swallow if the IW Council’s budget is approved.

Parking charges across the Island are also set to rise, as are Wightcare social care charges, home-to-school transport costs and crematorium and cemetery charges as the council looks to save £5.5 million in 2019/20.

“Tough choices will have to be made”
It said “tough choices will have to be made” as the plans were unveiled five months before they are due to come into force.

Parking across the Island will also become more expensive, as on-street charging is brought in for Crocker Street and Nodehill in Newport, in Ryde and on all Island esplanades.

The council will also introduce £1 evening fees in all on-street areas from 6pm to 8am.

Hutchinson: “Trying to introduce an element of fairness”
Deputy Leader and Cabinet member for Resources, Cllr Stuart Hutchinson, said:

“In some towns on-street parking is free and in others it’s paid for. We are trying to introduce an element of fairness.

“The other thing introducing charges will bring is increased turnover in those areas where we levy a charge. So in those areas where people are parking for free all day, they will only park for a short period of time because they will have to pay for it.”

Brodie: “Trying to tax the leisure economy”
Cllr Geoff Brodie, member for Newport East, said:

“We talk about regenerating our towns such as Newport, and trying to encourage more people into the town. Yet they want to start charging people for parking overnight, or coming in for dinner in the evening.

“They are trying to tax the leisure economy.

“Mrs May says austerity is over, but I would like to see the proof of that.”

Jones-Evans: “Not sure they’ve done their figures correctly”
Cllr Julie Jones-Evans, Newport Central, said:

“I am not sure, with regards to Crocker Street, they have done their figures correctly. That area is largely residential so people will be able to buy a resident’s permit.

“Should people just visiting in the day be the only ones to pay?”

Shorter opening hours at the tip
Lynnbottom Tip will also be closing for an hour earlier each day — the council has said this will have minimal impact as there is low footfall at this time.

Savings have been identified from all services, with 95 per cent coming through efficiencies — which the council has said will have ‘little or no impact’ — and five per cent in cuts.

Another rise in council tax
Council tax will also rise by another 2.99 per cent, although deputy leader and cabinet member for finance, Stuart Hutchinson, said it would not rule out an additional rise if the government allowed it.

This year, three per cent of the council tax rise was allocated for adult social care.

Rise in care costs
Next year, a three per cent increase in Wightcare costs and a review of all care packages could save the council over £1 million.

Stewart: Inappropriate to use reserves [£11.2m] on services
Council reserves now stand at £11.2 million, approximately three per cent of the overall budget. The Local Government Authority recommends councils have a minimum of £5 million in reserves.

Leader of the Isle of Wight council, Cllr Dave Stewart, said it would be inappropriate for them to be used on services needed year after year.

Cllr Hutchinson said:

“We are not planning to build up our reserves this year, because we think the budget will come in exactly on target.”

Increasing number of affordable houses
Surplus capital would be used for additional projects by the council, including increasing the number of affordable houses.

He said:

“We can either use that money, or take out a loan which we will have to pay back.”

Plans will go before the council on Thursday, recommending the set up of a local housing company to deliver affordable housing for Island residents.

Savings on PFI
A review of the Highways PFI will deliver £1 million in savings, with efficiencies in operation and maintenance.

Cllr Stewart said by releasing the budget ahead of schedule, he hoped to work with opposition councillors.

Other savings identified include:

  • Ending the contract for protective equipment and providing it ‘in house’ for the fire and rescue service (£80,000 in savings)
  • Increasing the Shanklin lift charges from £1.50 return to £2 (£10,000)
  • Leasing units at the BAE site (£33,000 income).

The papers
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This article is from the BBC’s LDRS (Local Democracy Reporter Service) scheme, which OnTheWight is taking part in. Some additions by OnTheWight. Ed

Image: © Simon Haytack

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7 Comments on "New parking charges, shorter tip hours, rise in social care charges and more, if budget proposals approved"

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prof

Parking charges will not “increase turnover” they will simply force those who still bother to come at all to seek out free parking in residential streets nearby.

I hope the few extra pounds you get will be worth the aggravation you’ll be causing islanders and visitors alike.

mistercee

All the money the Council have wasted on the floating bridge could have probably plugged the funding gap. We also have a new white elephant roundabout by Forest Road that no one wants or needs, another Council disaster in the making.

Colin
Ah yes, the tip. As someone who uses the tip occasionally later in the day, lets just put forward some observations. The IWC advised us all to use the tip after 3pm because it was a bit quieter. The reality is that it is still busy when I go, but I have the sense not to arrive half an hour before it closes in case there is… Read more »
garyeldridge
Higher parking charges are killing retailers and restaurants, because, people cannot afford the fees and go elsewhere, like on-line. The council know this but keep on stealing more money out the economy anyway. Shorter tip opening times apart from hugely inconveniencing all we customers, WHO HAVE PAID FOR A PROPER SERVICE and hiking the charges for commercial users, leads DIRECTLY, to fly- tipping, because businesses cannot pass… Read more »
iowdave

So we boot this lot out to replace them with…….erm Do you have any alternatives in mind?

mistercee

I agree with you. It’s so frustrating that we are powerless to do anything about it and yet we are all negatively affected. I also agree with iowdave, there are no satisfactory alternatives.

Austerity is Dead, Long Live Austerity!

Colin
And as for charging £1 for parking after 6pm. Has the IWC no shame? Many residents of the towns have difficulty enough parking their cars after coming home from work and now the council wants to fleece them even more. Shame on you at County Hall. Why not do something constructive like build a multi storey car park on the existing surface car park at Crocker Street… Read more »