That wonderful organisation, known by the name of “Edinburgh Council”, has once again demonstrated how out of touch they are, not only with voters but with people who might like to visit Edinburgh and spend some money here.
Their latest wheeze is to increase parking charges in the busiest areas of the city. Now these are the busiest areas because people want to go to them and do stuff. They have targeted the New Town and Stockbridge. The New Town has George Street, Princes Street and Multrees Walk, the main shopping areas and Stockbridge has lots of smaller individual shops and coffee places etc. Well done the Council. Good move. It will also hit people who work in the hundreds of businesses in these areas also. Not because they take their car to work but because they sometime can’t avoid having to do it and they have clients who drive in to meet with them.
Parking in Edinburgh is not cheap and there are a lot of restricted “residents parking” areas which residents have to buy a permit. This operates on the basis that commuter’s park in these areas and residents can’t find a space. There is some truth in this but it may well not be the real reason. The price increase and all other strategies relating to parking are solely aimed at raising revenue.
Recently we have had the Council reject out-sourcing services, even when Council Officers and independent auditors have advised that out-sourcing would save the council millions. We’ve had the building repairs saga which has cost property owners thousands of pounds in inflated fees and unnecessary work. And we’ve had the trams. £200 million short, no problem the councillor’s will borrow it on our behalf and we, the local council taxpayers, will pay it back for years and years.
There is a big furore about Glasgow Council and the way the Labour majority group have been doing things. The SNP are aiming to sort things by winning the most seats in the local council elections in a few months’ time. What are they going to do about Edinburgh Council? They are in coalition with the LibDems at the moment. Who are the LibDems? They are history, toast, gone for a long time.
Have the councils understood what is required to reduce their spending and do it in as fair a manner as possible. Edinburgh Council has made cuts but at the same time they are extorting as much money as possible from not only Edinburgh residents but tourists and visitors.
The SNP input to Edinburgh Council does not do Alex any favours. Edinburgh Council are demonstrating very successfully how out of touch politicians are, safe in their bubble.
Grandstanding on TV and in the papers is necessary at this moment in time so that Alex can take the fight to the Unionists. I’d suggest he get his councillors under some sort of control which ensures councillors demonstrate care and understanding of the current economic climate which is far more likely to get worse than it is to get better.
I, for one, will be making sure that the council get as little of my money as I possibly can. I’ll start walking more and I won’t be shopping in the expensive parking areas if I can possible avoid it. I have the feeling that I won’t be the only one.