After scrapping all six parking warden positions in Lincolnshire, two of which in Lincoln, Lincolnshire Police agreed to continue using funding from City of Lincoln Council to enforce on-street parking in the city.
The council currently pays Lincolnshire Police £48,000 per year to enforce parking restrictions throughout Lincoln, but following restructuring, the force decided to de-establish the role of traffic wardens in January.
The move was in anticipation of Lincolnshire County Council taking over civil parking enforcement responsibilities across the county, but the authority is not ready to assume the responsibilities until later this year.
This meant that from April there would be no dedicated parking wardens to enforce on-street parking restrictions in Lincoln and across the county besides Lincolnshire Police officers and PCSOs.
However, following discussions between the City of Lincoln Council and Lincolnshire Police, it has been agreed that the police will continue to enforce parking restrictions throughout Lincoln.
The City Council will provide another £48,000 to Lincolnshire Police for on-street parking enforcement in the new financial year, but it is unclear how the service will be delivered since the parking wardens were fired.
Lincolnshire Police Chief Inspector Mark Housley said the force will work with the City Council to find a solution, so that all forms of parking restrictions, including residents’ parking zones, will be enforced in Lincoln over the next year.
“It has not been decided what form that will take, but we have de-established the role of traffic wardens within the force and that decision will not be reversed.
“As soon as a decision has been made on how the service will be delivered we will communicate it with the wider public,” Housley added.
City Councillor Marc Jones instigated the discussions with Lincolnshire Police and says he is happy with the result.
“I know residents and businesses have expressed concern that parking does continue to be enforced,” Jones said.
“We’ve always been clear that funding will be made available as long as we are confident that effective enforcement is happening, particularly where we have residents’ parking schemes.”
Meanwhile, at the County Council, preparations to take over civil parking enforcement are underway, said Brian Thompson, Divisional Highways Manager:
“We are currently carrying out a financial revaluation to ensure there is best value for taxpayers, ahead of an application to the Department for Transport to take on Civil Parking Enforcement later this year.”
Lincolnshire County Council says it is preparing a parking policy that will guide actions on enforcement matters and also on-street parking provision.
The authority is yet to consult those involved in the implementation and operation of parking, including the police, neighbouring local authorities, the DVLA and the Traffic Enforcement Centre.