PARKING charges in Huddersfield will change.
Kirklees Council’s Labour Cabinet decided yesterday to alter town centre tariffs – despite Conservative protests.
On-street parking from Monday to Saturday currently costs drivers 70p for 30 minutes, £1.40 for an hour and £2.10 for the maximum stay of 90 minutes.
The Cabinet decided to change this to £1 for 45 minutes and £2 for the maximum stay of 90 minutes.
The changes mean a slight dip in the per minute cost of parking. However, the minimum payment will rise by 30p.
Business parking permits will be hiked from £115 a year to £200 a year.
Conservative Clr Donald Firth told yesterday’s Cabinet meeting that the changes would hurt town centre businesses.
The Holme Valley South man said: “You’re putting up the minimum charge to £1. But the worst thing you’ve done is to put up the cost of parking permits for shopkeepers.
“Don’t you realise that shopkeepers are having a hell of a time during the recession? You say you’re helping businesses but you’re putting people out of business.
“The people of my valley are not amused by this, and I’m sure the people in Huddersfield aren’t amused either.”
But council leader Clr Mehboob Khan replied that the shopkeepers’ association – the Huddersfield Town Centre Partnership – backed the plan.
The Greenhead Labour man said: “They support this change in tariff because it will help to increase the turnover of very valuable town centre parking spaces.”
Clr Khan added that the last review of parking charges – carried out by the Conservative Cabinet four years ago – had led to higher charges.
He said: “In 2006 it was increased by 43% and short-stay by 17%.”
The Cabinet also approved changes to parking fees in Dewsbury.
On-street charges are currently 40p for 30 minutes, 70p for an hour and £1 for the maximum stay of 90 minutes. This will change to 50p for 45 minutes and £1 for the maximum stay of 90 minutes.
Lorries will now be charged £10 per night for Sands Lane Lorry Park in Dewsbury.
The new rates come into force in June.