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Council Cashes In On Parking

By Duncan Horscroft on December 20, 2011 in News

It is becoming increasingly apparent that property developers and builders within the Waverley municipality are held in much higher esteem by Waverley Council than their own rate-paying residents.

The reason for this observation is the ongoing work being undertaken in Pacific Street, Bronte, just behind the café strip.

Not only do the tradies working on two major construction jobs in the small street appear immune to the wrath of the Waverley parking rangers, but it has been revealed to The Beast that two parking spots reserved in Pacific Street for “Council Authorised Vehicles” between 7am and 5pm, Monday to Saturday, just near the corner of Nelson Street, have been “sold off” to the workers.

Yes, you read it right, the Council has reportedly sold the two spots to the builders for an alleged $8000 for the duration of the refit of the unit block.

Why the council had the gall to actually take up two spots in the residential street is beyond belief, as council vehicles could easily park in the Bronte Cutting just a short stroll away.

But to actually sell the spots to blow-ins, when the locals are struggling to park their own cars within easy reach of their homes, is an absolute kick in the guts to the people who live there.

One resident we spoke to was furious when she heard the news.

“It’s a bloody disgrace the way we are treated in our own streets,” she said.

“We have been here for many years and been a solid part of the community. We’ve been involved in the local surf club, swimming clubs and our daughter has grown up in the area.

“My husband needs his car for work and I need mine to get my daughter to school and her various sporting and out-of-school activities.

“We both pay $150 a year for the ‘privilege’ of having a parking permit for Pacific Street and now we can’t find a spot anywhere near our home at any time during the day, due to all the building work going on.”

“And now the bloody council is making money out of car spots that shouldn’t even belong to them anyway.”

A major development at the eastern end of the street has also ruffled a lot of feathers with vehicles belonging to the tradies continually being parked illegally right under the noses of the turn-a-blind-eye parking rangers.

And, if that is not enough, it has also been revealed that some of the cafes on the beachfront have been buying books of parking tickets to give to their patrons so they can park for $2 a day while sipping their lattes.

“It’s gotten to a stage where we can’t even have our families over on the weekends because we are being parked out of our own area,” the resident said.

“Even with the entitlement of being able to purchase ‘parking tickets’ it’s a waste of time because no one can even get close to where we live.

“The council doesn’t care about family values, all it’s interested in is taxing the locals for their choice of lifestyle. It also seems the people using the cafes now have more rights than us.

“It’s a frigging joke. This used to be a wonderful area to live in but now it’s getting out of hand due to the greed of a council that couldn’t care less about anything other than lining its own pockets.”

It’s a safe bet to say 2012 will be very prosperous for Waverley Council on the back of last year’s 11.9% rate rise, a 4.2% jump in councillors’ pay packets, a 100% increase in the cost of beach parking permits and now an extra $8000 for the slush fund from selling off parking spaces in a public street.

So much for the global financial crisis.