Local MP, Drew Hendry has raised a motion in Parliament calling for the UK Government to introduce legislation to bring private car park operators under statutory regulation that will make them ‘accountable to the communities they serve’. The move follows his support for the Highland News’ campaign to tackle the excessive charges levied by Smart Parking at the Strothers Lane car park in Inverness.
Mr Hendry is the SNP Transport Group Leader at Westminster and says that the lack of statutory regulation around private parking operators is enabling unfair operating practices by some companies.
Commenting on his motion, he said:
“More and more people are coming forward to say that they have been victims of excessive penalties and subsequent threats over payments. People are often unaware of the unnecessarily complex requirements to register for parking until after they have committed to leaving their car there.
“It’s fairly common to see fines of £30 to £60 for tiny overstays, sometimes of mere minutes, and easily made typing errors. One constituent was served a notice for typing the letter “o” instead of a zero and there are many other examples of what can only be described as profiteering from an unfriendly system.
“I hope this Early Day Motion will help raise awareness of this issue and gather support from other Members of Parliament. I have also written to the UK Government Minister responsible to ask that he take action to regulate the practices of private parking operators to ensure fairness for those unfairly caught out.”