Although the Mayor and City Council (M&CC) is moving ahead with the reintroduction of paid metered parking in the City of Georgetown under the contractor Smart City Solutions Inc (SCSI), the Opposition maintains that it will never support the renegotiated contract.
City Hall is set to vote to adopt the amended by-laws proposed by the renegotiation Committee, according to Councillor Ivelaw Henry.
But Opposition Leader Dr Bharrat Jagdeo has maintained his nonsupport for the renegotiated contract, stating that it was flawed from the beginning.
“This contract was flawed from the beginning, I think the city can make more money by doing simple things even if it wants to introduce paid parking, it can receive without going through this contract again, but the reason why they are sticking to this contract is not just what will flow to the City…it’s what would flow to individuals..” said Jagdeo.
The Opposition leader noted that City Hall could manage to gain more income if it treated paid parking of vehicles in a much different way as they did before.
“All they need is a thousand gallons of paint and go around and mark every area in the city and once a month sell a sticker for a two thousand dollars, not $800 a day, and people pay you and they park anywhere in the city once they have the sticker on the vehicle.” He noted that in this way Council officers can come around and if they see a vehicle parked which does not have the sticker, then the owner can be charged for that.
This plan, he claims is more affordable and takes away the huge administrative cost that City Hall would have to incur if they were to go ahead with reintroducing the parking meters under SCSI.
According to Jagdeo “this unholy insistence that we go with this contract leads me to be very suspicious.”
During a Council meeting on Monday, Councillors were given an extension of time and would meet on April 4 at 14:00hrs to complete discussions and vote on the amendments.
Following renegotiation, SCSI and the M&CC reached a new agreement under the controversial Parking Meter Project, which will now see persons paying $150 per hour and $800 for eight hours of parking in the city.
Meanwhile, residents of the city would 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 Smart City Solutions, and one third party with the terms of reference for the committee expected to be agreed upon at a later date.