Council Website Predicts Council Decision in Advance? – WITH CORRECTION

The District Council website reports:

Changes to Parking Enforcement

Posted on 22 March 2011 by admin

From 1 April, Rochford District Council will no longer be responsible for enforcing on-street parking regulations (yellow lines, commuter parking etc).

While Essex County Council is still the Highways Authority, the task of enforcing on-street parking controls will be transferred to a new Parking Partnership headed by Chelmsford Borough Council.

The changes won?t affect residents unduly as enforcement will continue as it does now, but the Enforcement Officers on-street will be wearing slightly different uniforms to Rochford?s own staff who will continue to monitor and enforce within the Council?s car parks.

In future, if you have any parking queries or enforcement issues that relate to parking on roads, pavements or grass-verges, contact the Parking Partnership on or email parking@chelmsford.gov.uk

This is quite correct. The District Council has joined a consortium of councils based in Chelmsford. Let’s hope the new system works out OK.

What’s odd is that the decision on this was only taken by the Council cabinet on March 30th – yet the website story was dated March 22nd!

CORRECTION: (April 13th)

It’s been pointed out to onlineFOCUS that this post may have been misleading.

ECC, who have responsibility for on street parking, decided to remove that responsibility from the Essex Districts and place it with two Partnerships, one operating in north Essex and one operating in south Essex. The new operation came into being earlier this month. That basically was the substance of the article on the coucnil website. To advise residents of this change.

The decision taken by the Cabinet at the end of March was not about this change per se, but whether to become a partner in the South Essex Partnership overseeing the new operation. Rochford DC could have chosen not to join the partnership, who would still have had responsibility from this month of managing on street parking in our District.

Apologies for any misunderstanding.

  • Wasn’t this story run in the Echo a few weeks back? I thought some local authorities refused to join because they didn’t like the way it was going to be run.

    Will they be policing the yellow lines in Downhall Park Way when they are painted?

  • I’d like to explain more, but I’m not allowed to.

    The matter was agreed at the meeting of the council cabinet on March 30th , one day before the partnership started. As it was the cabinet, ordinary members of the council wouldn’t be allowed to ask questions on the night. As it was private and conidential , I can’t tell any details of the minutes.

    The cabinet also decided that the matter was urgent, and therefore their decision to sign-up to the call-in CANNOT be called in to full council or to the review committee.

    All I can say is that I have some concerns about the agreement.

  • Chris, I understand that you can’t comment, but some limited information was presented in the Echo, hopefully posting the links won’t upset anybody.

    This was the news item posted in February:

    http://www.echo-news.co.uk/news/local_news/basildon/8879209.Council_refuses_to_sign_up_to__rip_off__parking_scheme/

    And again in March:

    http://www.echo-news.co.uk/archive/2011/03/05/Chelmsford+News+%28chelmsford_news%29/8887923.Parking_plans_splitting_county/

    The Echo stories stated that Rochford was one of the authorities that had worries/issues, I take it that these have been addressed.

  • Donot expect lines in Downhall Park Way for quite a while. At the last West Area meeting Highways were presented with a list of improvements under localism from Rayleigh Town Council. Strangely the ones put forward were all from Downhall ward. Perhaps I am the only one who still bothers or doesnot appreciate that the coffers are empty.

  • I see that on FixMyStreet.com the council have kicked the DPW parking issues into the long grass, and closed the complaint on the website with a comment that dangerous parking is for the police to enforce.

    I’d be more than happy for the police to enforce the highway code regulations on parking, but I believe the police have already been asked about parking in DPW and have said they only get involved if the parking is dangerous or inconvenient. Putting aside the fact that parking restrictions shouldn’t be necessary if there is no danger or inconvenience so logically all parking enforcement should then be a police matter, do we know if the police have actually been to DPW to assess the situation?

    If the police say it isn’t dangerous or inconvenient and so won’t get involved, the only solution is for the council to put down yellow lines and use civil enforcement officers.

    The FixMyStreet complaint should not be closed until the council has addressed the question of yellow lines. This should also include consideration of the sensors buried in the road for the traffic lights, as parked cars at the entrance to DPW are forcing drivers onto the sensors and falsely triggering the lights and stopping traffic on Rawreth Lane.

    It wouldn’t be a bad idea if the planning procedures were also updated to prevent these types of parking issues in future developments.

  • This is a serious matter, and we are very concerned that things are moving backwards on what was agreed as one of the priority items last year.

    This isn’t the only FixMyStreet issue being treated in this way. Watch this space.

    This is what the situation was last year:

    ” January 15th, 2010 |
    A Step Forward On Highways Issues.

    The meeting of the West Area Committee last night was a good one.

    This is the first year of the new ‘localism’ system for County Highways, where the County Council provide money for highways improvements and District Councils have a big say in what is done within their borders. Really small stuff – such as repairing potholes – won’t be dealt with by this method. And really big stuff – such as new roads, or even new slip roads – won’t be funded this way either.

    This process was like this – the committee went through a whole load of sugegstions and then gave them a priority from 1 to 4 (1 being top priority). The other area committees will do the same. The list will then go to the cabinet , who will make the final decisions…

    This was what we agreed

    Top Priority level 1
    ==============
    Traffic Orders (yellow lines etc)
    # Junction protection yellow lines at the Worcester Road / Leslie Road junction
    # Junction protection yellow lines at the Essex Close /Warwick Road junction
    # Junction protection lines at the Fairland Close / Hambro Hill junction
    # limited waiting restrictions outside the Grange Parade of shops in London Road
    # restrictions at the Grove Road junction with Grove Court and on the school side
    # restrictions in Downhall Park way near Salisbury Close and the playground car park.

    Pedestrian Crossings
    # Crossing at Rawreth Lane / Down Hall Park Way junction. (there are already some funds for this)

    Tackling Congestion
    # Rawreth lane / Hullbridge Road junction – purchase of land needs to be agreed, there are some funds for Asda for this

    Street Lighting
    # Bardfield Way / Langham Drive alley

    Highways Repairs
    # repairs to the road and pavements in Little Wheatley Chase
    # repairs along Church Road”

  • I fail to see how the police can say the obstructive parking by a white van and a strange modified black landrover right on the junction of DPW is not obstructive or dangerous. I have witnessed several near misses recently as those approaching from the right hand bend totally have their sight blocked of the adjoining road and any traffic waiting there. These vehicles are parked in contravention of the Highway Code.

    It was bad enough when we just had the cars on the bend to contend with – it now appears that this stretch of road has become the local car park – some cars seem to be there for days and are not moved! Most seem to be outside houses with ample free space or provided parking spaces or garages. Some people are just to lazy to use them!!

    CCR