In their 2014 election manifesto, Croydon Labour promised to offer free parking for the first hour in district centres:
'To support our local economies, our district centres will offer free parking for the first hour. This will not only make shopping easier for residents but will also support our local traders in difficult times.'
These words can be found on page 15 of Labour's 'Ambitious for Croydon' manifesto.
On 26th April 2016, less than two years after being elected, the Council’s Labour-dominated Traffic Management Committee voted to slash one-hour free parking in Coulsdon.
Almost 2,000 residents had written to the Council objecting to their proposals. Every local Residents' Association, many local businesses, the Member of Parliament, the GLA member and the six councillors for Coulsdon West and Coulsdon East all joined these objections. Yet the Labour councillors pushed it through regardless.
Your Conservative councillors wanted to call in the decision to the Council’s Scrutiny Committee – a group of councillors who closely look at what the Council does. The rules say that only ‘key decisions’ can be brought to the Scrutiny committee. So we asked: is slashing free parking in Coulsdon a key decision?
We received the answer yesterday from our Labour Council: ‘…I am writing to confirm that my advice to the Cabinet Member has been that this need not be considered a key decision.’
Not only have Labour broken their promise and cut free parking, but they have so little regard for the concerns of the people of Coulsdon that they don’t even feel this is a ‘key decision’!
Labour broke their contract with the people of Croydon. Labour think this is not an important decision.
At the next election, Croydon should not make the same mistake again.