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Would you prefer a discount permit or free winter parking in Scarborough?

The seafront offers free parking throughout winter
The seafront offers free parking throughout winter

A plan to offer residents a discount for council-run car parks in the popular tourist destinations of Scarborough, Whitby and Filey is being challenged.

A group of Independent councillors on the authority have called in the decision taken earlier this month, which would have seen people living in the towns pay £10 per year for a permit which would give them a discount on the price per hour in Scarborough Council’s car parks.

The issue for the councillors is that in order to offset the cost of the scheme the council would scrap its free winter parking initiative.

Currently, seafront car parks carry no charge between November and February to help businesses in the borough when the tourists have gone home.

If the new discount comes into effect then Scarborough Council would introduce a £1 charge to allow people to park for 24 hours during the winter months.

Now, members of the council’s Independent group have signed the call-in document, meaning the decision will be examined by the Overview and Scrutiny Board next month.

The board can ask for the decision to be changed if it agrees with the Independent councillors, though it cannot overturn the decision itself.

Cllr Janet Jefferson, the author of the call-in, said the change would impact on businesses and said the council’s Parking Work Group had not been informed before the decision was taken.

She said: “We feel that resident parking concessions should not be introduced at the cost of losing free winter parking.

“Free winter parking is essential to our tourism economy, allowing many attractions and facilities to remain open all year round, thereby maintaining 12-month employment for residents.”

She added that the loss of free parking would lead to more people leaving their vehicles in residential streets, therefore putting more pressure on the borough’s parking wardens.

The call-in will be heard on July 4.