To consider and comment on the update regarding Residents’ Parking Schemes (RPS)
The Scrutiny Commission received the report from the Team Manager, Projects Highways which outlined the operational detail of residents parking schemes for discussion ahead of a report to Cabinet later in the year.
The Chair had hoped for more information about the current local area review, the forward plan for the consultation and the next steps. The Service Director, Transport reported that the local area reviews in five areas had now commenced as outlined within the Mayor’s manifesto which would run until mid October. The feedback from the review surveys would then be considered before formal Traffic Regulation Orders were prepared.
Councillors had been asked to take the lead role in engaging with communities to encourage responses from local people about local schemes.
There was some concern that the review felt unsatisfactory and the following comments were made:
· Councillors were expected to lead the engagement. However, officers had developed skills and processes for engaging and consulting with the public. Members had hoped that the processes involved should have been discussed with them prior to the consultation.
· The online survey was criticised for being too ‘one size fits all’ and structured. A ‘free form’ field within the survey would allow comments to take account for local circumstances. To not have that facility would compress and oppress the responses that could be gathered.
· As the survey was only available online there would be a group of residents who would not be able to engage. Councillors asked for further paper copies to be provided through Neighbourhood teams and community buildings.
· Although officers listened to the public, there was then debate about whether those comments received were acted upon or implemented in response.
· It was disappointing that the Spike Island review had been delayed for three months to allow for this group review process.
· Councillors requested input into the process that would follow the survey and involvement in key decisions that may be required.
· The initial understanding that the reviews would be led through the Neighbourhood Partnership had not happened and Councillors asked that the Neighbourhood Partnership structure be used more to help information and engagement with communities.
· Customer care should be improved as often emails do not get a response and there was no answerphone to leave messages.
· The specific example of Clifton was raised where there was anger that customer permits were being used for all day employee parking. There was some momentum towards litigation so assistance to find a resolution was requested.
Officers confirmed that any comments additional to those within the survey could be submitted via email separately.
It was confirmed that every submission to a TRO received a response within the objection report and an opportunity was given to ward Councillors for comment before it was signed off by Executive Order.
It was agreed that the comments of the Scrutiny Commission would be further considered by the party leads before being signed off and submitted to the consultation, officers and Cabinet Member. (ACTION: draft minutes to be discussed further by the party leads before submission to the consultation)
The Service Director, Transport agreed to liaise with the Cabinet Member (Councillor Bradshaw) to confirm to Councillors how they should lead the review. Councillor Bradshaw would be asked to speak to the Scrutiny Commission at their next meeting on 17th October.
With regards to the second stage of the consultation there would be an opportunity at the next Scrutiny Commission meeting to consider this element of the review, including how communities would wished to have a Residents Parking Scheme can request one. ACTION: To be added to the agenda for the next meeting, including invitation to the Cabinet Member.