Mr Mustard has been busy this morning. Despite the rain he was out in High Barnet along with other volunteers raising money to pay for the legal costs of the judicial review that David Attfield, a Solicitor who lives within the East Finchley CPZ, has started on behalf of all CPZ residents.
As you would expect the residents of High Barnet are very interested in the outcome of the case and generous to boot.
Barnet Council have a slogan "Better services for less money" which appears to the residents of High Barnet who live within the CPZ not to be the truth as they are expected to pay at least £100 for car permits in this financial year whereas it was only £40 last year.
Is the Service better ? No, the service has got worse. The free bays have been removed, the ability to pay with cash into a meter is disappearing, and it is easy to wait 20 minutes to get through on the telephone to the parking department. Lip service is what you get from Barnet Council not real service.
Are we paying less money ? No. Visitor vouchers, a lifeline for the elderly, have been raised from £1 to £4 even if your visitor is only stopping for 15 minutes.
Parents live in fear of parking wardens at nursery
The CPZs were introduced on the basis that the charge to residents would only be enough to cover the costs of the CPZ and at the start, some 20 years ago Mr Mustard recalls, the charge for a car permit was £5. With inflation at say 5% the current charge should be £10 not £100. Did Mr Travers
ty, the Chief Finance Officer, the contractor who is paid £1,000 a day ( he can easily afford a car permit but he doesn't need to as he lives in Haringey ) let his finger dally on the zero button on the calculator when working out the budget?
So although fund raising is going well this is just a little nudge for you, if you live in a CPZ, to visit the CPZ Action Group website, click the Paypal Donate button and send what you can afford to help the cause.
Barnet CPZ Action Group
Just think about this. If you expect to live in the Borough for another 20 years and have one car you will pay at least another £60 * 20 = £1,200 to Barnet Council during that time for the dubious pleasure of trying to park somewhere near your home.
Mr Mustard has just realised that CPZ can also stand for Councillors Pay Zero which, unlike you, is the amount they pay to park anywhere in the Borough.