Residents who have been unable to use parking permits because of a hitch in a new ticket machine system have been granted a concession by Aberdeenshire Council.
Officials are allowing a 12-month extension to those who have paid a fee but been inconvenienced following a technical hold-up in the replacement programme.
I very much welcome this extension as a gesture of goodwillCouncillor Rob Merson Ellon and District
The installation of the new machines has been beset by delays with the roll-out across the region being affected by a problem with mains electricity.
Ellon and District Councillor Rob Merson welcomed the council move.
He told the Times: “Unfortunately, the parking ticket machine replacement programme which was initiated some months ago ran into technical difficulties at a number of locations and there has been a delay in the commissioning of some ticket machines.
“It would appear that members of the public have taken advantage of the ‘free parking’ situation which has resulted, occasionally to the exclusion of local residents with parking permits.
“I was recently approached by a constituent who informed me that she had invested in an annual parking permit so that she might leave her car in the car park adjacent to her home, but was regularly unable to do so due to ‘rogue’ parkers using all of the available spaces.”
Councillor Merson appealed to the authority’s transportation team and was told they intend granting a twelve-month extension for those residents with parking permits who have been disadvantaged by the delay in commissioning the ticket machine at their local car park.
He added: “I very much welcome this extension as a gesture of goodwill, which seems only fair to those who have not been able to fully enjoy the benefit of their investment, for reasons outwith their control.”
The issue was also raised with officials by Ellon Councillor Gillian Owen.
She said: “Everyone will be aware the process to install new machines with mains isolation has taken much longer than expected.
“In response to a number of queries from constituents I took the matter up with the Director of Infrastructure Services and have received an assurance that all those residents who had paid for permits will be receiving a letter offering a 12-month extension to their permit.”
The councillor added: “The new parking regime is scheduled to go live at the end of the month so if you are parking locally, in the Library or Costcutter car parks, it means you will have to pay so check before you leave your car to see if the machine is now working.”