Bristol residents' parking scheme 'sham consultation'

RPZ sign Mayor George Ferguson wants to roll out 18 residents' parking zones by the end of 2014

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A formal complaint has been sent to Bristol City Council over the way a consultation is being conducted for a city-wide residents' parking scheme.

The Westbury Park Community Association said it was "disturbed by (Mayor) George Ferguson's sham consultation".

The association claims the consultation does not meet the council's own code of good practice on consultation.

A council spokesman said traffic schemes were not subject to the same rules as other council initiatives.

In the letter written to the council the association said: "We are not aware of any statutory duty to consult on residents' parking schemes.

'More clarity'

"However, even if there is no statutory duty the Bristol City Council code makes clear that consultation on major issues or proposals is an adopted local policy."

It also said consultation by public authorities should be carried out to national Cabinet Office Standards and listed a number of points where it claimed Bristol City Council had not done so.

"We are not against some of the aims behind the scheme or the idea in principle," said the association's Ken Clarke.

"Our concern is the hopelessly inadequate consultation that is leading to a blanket, 'one size fits all' approach that may help to make a more sustainable city centre but currently looks like doing so at the expense of sustainable neighbourhoods such as ours."

A council spokesman said the mayor had already asked for the project to be looked at to ensure "more clarity on when and how residents are formally engaged".

It has also put a new page onto its website for people to have their say about the proposed schemes.

The council is due to announce how it will amend its proposals for residents' parking schemes later this week.

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