While saying that it is “neither supportive nor against the implementation of paid metered parking in Georgetown”, the Alliance For Change wants the City Council to suspend the implementation of the Parking Meter system.
In a statement this afternoon, the party which makes up the coalition government and sits as the coalition majority on the City Council, said that while it recognizes the autonomy of the City Council and its legal right to regularize parking in Georgetown, “the current arrangements do not appear to be in the best interest of the people of the city.”
The AFC said it is seriously concerned about the handling of the project from its inception to its current stage, “but specifically in terms of the lack of sufficient prior public consultation; the absence of transparency and of a competitive bidding process; the seeming lack of proper planning with regard to exemptions and the pricing and penalty structures.”
Some of the AFC’s members on the the Council joined protesters last Friday outside City Hall in a picketing exercise against the parking meters.
The Outgoing Deputy Mayor and the Incoming Deputy Mayor, who are both AFC members, were prominent in the protest against the paid parking meters.
Now the AFC wants the City Council to reconsider the pertinent aspects of the Ministry of Finance’s review of the project and seek a second independent review of its contract with GEO Park/Smart City Solutions.
“Further, the available documentation, suggests that the municipality may have overreached its authority on a number of matters including taxation arrangements, traffic arrangements and road ownership. The party views this with alarm as it does the apparent exclusivity and monopolization of paid metered parking in the city”, the AFC statement said.
There have been calls from the Private Sector Commission and the Georgetown Chamber of Commerce for the Government to get involved in the impasse over the parking meters.
The Movement Against Parking Meters group, has been stepping up its social media protest against the implementation of the project and intends to host another midday protest outside City Hall this week.
The group’s founders have made it clear that while they are not against parking meters, the current system is too pricy and was badly implemented.
The Mayor of Georgetown, Patricia Chase-Green, while lashing out at the protests against the parking meters has also indicated that she is open to meet with representatives of the Movement Against Parking Meters.