City Hall to broach Cabinet on amended parking meter by-laws- Bulkan

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The Georgetown municipality is expected to make a presentation to Cabinet soon over the amended parking meter by-laws.

Communities Minister Ronald Bulkan

In providing an update on the controversial matter, Communities Minister Ronald Bulkan on Wednesday revealed that a team from City Hall is expected to make a presentation to the Cabinet next week.

Minister Bulkan reiterated his support for the parking meters and noted that it helps to bring order and reduce the chaos on city streets.

The amended by-laws were passed by the council in April of 2018 after several reviews and was presented to the Minister in May of 2018.

In the amended by-laws there are provisions under the new contract that persons will be paying $150 per hour and $800 for eight hours of parking.

Among other conditions, the new by-laws provide for residents of the city to be issued with a restricted residential pass for free parking from 17:00-19:00hrs Monday to Friday, while parking will be free on Saturdays.

Under the modified contract, both parties have agreed to have an oversight committee set up to monitor, review, and manage the operation of the project. The committee is expected to have three representatives from City Hall, three from contractor Smart City Solutions Inc. (SCSI), and a third party with the terms of reference for the committee expected to be agreed upon at a later date.

The Committee’s report noted that during the re-negotiations, the subject of share profit and contractual obligations were discussed and it was agreed to have it remain the same being the 20/80 M&CC-SCSI for a period of 20 years.

It was also disclosed that in the event of arbitration, the proceedings would be held in Miami, despite the jurisdiction being Guyana.

Despite the revised rates, the Georgetown Chambers of Commerce and Industry (GCCI) and the Movement Against Parking Meters (MAPM) have both rejected a return of the project.

The project was initially rolled out in late January 2017. However, citizens rejected the paid parking system and staged numerous protests in front of City Hall calling for the initiative to be revoked, since its fees were considered too burdensome.

Moreover, the clandestine and unilateral way in which the contract was awarded to the contractor SCSI only fueled its rejection more.

The project was then suspended by Central Government shortly after for the contract and its by-laws to be revised.

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