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New Forest parking clock prices set to rise in 2022 to cover £150,000 cost of introducing virtual system

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PARKING clock price rises are likely to be introduced next year, senior district councillors have admitted, to help cover the £150,000 cost of a new system.

In 2023 a new virtual parking clock scheme for New Forest car parks will come into force, meaning residents will sign up remotely or online.

A report to the latest cabinet meeting admitted "these costs will be covered by a change in the clock prices for 2022". However, it is not yet known how much the rise will be.

Lyndhurst town centre car park, Lyndhurst (51026588)
Lyndhurst town centre car park, Lyndhurst (51026588)

New Forest District Council leader Cllr Edward Heron told the latest cabinet meeting that any changes would be announced in the near future, likely via a decision by the portfolio holder for the environment and coastal services, Cllr Steve Davies.

When Liberal Democrat leader Cllr Malcolm Wade pushed members of the ruling Tory cabinet for more information, Cllr Jeremy Heron, the portfolio holder for finance, acknowledged the changes would not just be for a single year.

Cllr Jeremy Heron stressed no definite decision had been made over the policy – which was included in an NFDC medium-term financial report assessing how the authority would deal with potential future expenses increases.

"It’s a plan for assumptions and estimates," he said. "We have to highlight within the plan and show any potential or possible ongoing costs. It does not mean it will happen."

Cllr Steve Clarke welcomed the use of technology to help improve services, but stressed generations who did not use or have access to it also needed to be catered for – which Cllr Edward Heron said the council was mindful of.

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