Disabled drivers to be charged for parking in New Forest council-owned car parks (From Bournemouth Echo)
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Disabled drivers to be charged for parking in New Forest council-owned car parks
12:00pm Thursday 7th March 2013 in News
THOUSANDS of disabled drivers could have to pay to use council-owned car parks in the New Forest.
Controversial plans to scrap the free parking enjoyed by Blue Badge holders are set to get the go ahead – despite strong opposition to the scheme.
A survey carried out by the district council showed that 86 per cent of Blue Badge owners in the Forest were against having to pay.
But members of the council’s ruling Cabinet have approved the scheme, which aims to boost the authority’s annual income by about £75,000.
Charges for Blue Badge holders are likely to be introduced next year once the necessary legal process has been completed.
The proposed change will affect about 10,000 Forest residents, plus disabled visitors to the district.
They would have to buy a ticket every time they use a council-owned car park, which will mean paying between 80p and £4 in places such as Lymington.
Alternatively, they can buy an annual parking permit for £100 or £20, depending on whether they want to use long or short-stay spaces.
The recommendation will now go to full council.