REVEALED: Gladstone drivers forking out big time in fines

Gladstone's CBD is where most of the parking fines are dealt.
Gladstone's CBD is where most of the parking fines are dealt. Brenda Strong

ALMOST $60,000 has been collected in parking fines by the council in the past financial year.

Parking, particularly in the CBD, has been something many residents say they are frustrated by.

A Gladstone Regional Council spokesman said the issue had a lot to do with "perceptions rather than reality".

"In council's experience there are parks available but perhaps their location is not well enough understood or signposted," he said.

"The Jumpstart Our City Heart CBD renewal strategy is looking at ways to improve way-finding including signage for car parking to assist patrons."

The spokesman said from the $57,390 collected in fines, the majority would have been in Gladstone, as the CBD is the site most governed by parking regulations in the region.

Park here, but only if you know how long you're allowed to stay.
Park here, but only if you know how long you're allowed to stay. Paul Braven

"Income from parking violations offsets expenses incurred by the Local Law Enforcement Business Unit to regulate parking," he said.

The main type of offence people are fined for is staying longer than the period indicated on official signs, according to the council.

The spokesman said in the past 12 months there had been 165 reviews of parking fines. Of that, 146 were denied but 19 were approved.

The council employed a dedicated parking compliance officer in July 2014. Prior to that parking regulations were part of the local law enforcement officers' responsibilities.

There are a number of parking offences that people can be charged with.

"Offences are listed in the local laws but others include stopping on a road marked with a continuous yellow line, stopping an unauthorised vehicle in a loading zone, stopping an unauthorised vehicle in a permit zone and stopping contrary to people with a disabilities parking permit," the council spokesman said.

The spokesman said parking was being addressed in the council's Jumpstart Our City Heart Strategy.

According to the strategy, the council acknowledges there is a perception from the community that there are parking problems, particularly in the CBD.

"In recognising these themes, raising awareness of parking availability in the CBD is prioritised as part of the renewal strategy and additional areas for public parking have been suggested," the strategy reads. "The provision and timing of additional public car parking, intersection upgrades and road and laneway widening will require further investigation by council."

Our say, page 11

Topics:  fines gladstone regional council parking

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