Council's €900k parking spend -- but clamping won't be used

Geraldine Gittens

A council is set to spend €900,000 on enforcing parking restrictions.

Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council has awarded the two-year contract to APCOA parking, the company which has been ticketing south siders since 2005.

Motorists who park their cars illegally will be issued with tickets, and cars could be relocated and clamped.

Local representatives and businesses say parking practices are a 'necessary evil' but they do not want a draconian system of clamping.

Don McManus, from Dun Laoghaire Business Association said: "We wouldn't have any of the congestion levels compared to Dublin City Council. There are other avenues and methods open to the council like a tow-away policy, and the court services."

But DLRCC has insisted that while it has clamping powers, it is not their policy to do so.

A spokesperson said: "Whilst limited clamping was approved by the council last year for motorists with a number of unpaid parking fines, this option within our parking scheme has not been exercised.


"The primary objective of the council's parking enforcement policies is to ensure a high level of turnover and availability of on street parking spaces, which in turn facilitates short stay parkers who want to visit the town and residents who want to be able to park by their homes."

However, councillors have criticised the council's parking enforcement practices as "over zealous" -- even though there is no clamping.

Cllr Cormac Devlin (FF) said: "There has been over-zealous patrolling. I've heard of the parking people hiding and almost waiting for people to leave their car in blackspots.

"And there have been a lot of tweaking and amendments which I've been fighting for. For the last three months, we've amended the pay and display to allow for a 15-minute grace."

Cllr John Bailey (FG) warned: "One of the major problems is that there are 2,000 car parking spaces in the Dun Laoghaire area and 1,600 parking permits."

But he added: "I would be totally opposed to clamping. That's not the way to do business.