Free Parking For Councillors: Do You Agree?

Thu 24th Sep 2020

Local councillors in one of the busiest districts of Greater Manchester will be given free parking permits as part of their benefits package, despite residents sometimes struggling to park.

Under the controversial new scheme councillors from Stockport will be able to park in Residents Parking Zones, areas where council tax payers have to pay a £31 fee to park in front of their own home. The council say that the local politicians need access to parking to carry out their responsibilities, though cabinet members will be able to park anywhere within the borough as part of their benefits package.

Parking in Stockport has been a hot topic for residents after the council put a halt on applying for permits after a lack of available spots. With on-street parking at a premium, not every resident can be guaranteed permit, which has made the decision to award parking spots to the councillors all the more controversial.

The scheme has even raised eyebrows from some of the councillors who might benefit. Councillor Charles Gibson said: “I’m interested in the justification for that as it’s clearly an expense.

“I’m slightly concerned about the optics of giving free parking to councillors and cabinet members where we are charging residents to park on their own streets.

“We are saying we can visit them for free where their visitors can’t.”