Will councils look to cut parking fines by 25 per cent?

Fine deal: Wollongong and Shellharbour councils are yet to confirm if they will follow the government's lead and cut some parking fines by 25 per cent. Picture: Adam McLean
Fine deal: Wollongong and Shellharbour councils are yet to confirm if they will follow the government's lead and cut some parking fines by 25 per cent. Picture: Adam McLean

The government’s call for councils to cut parking fines by 25 per cent won’t have much benefit for Shellharbour drivers.

State Treasurer Dominic Perrottet has announced plans to cut fines for the 10 most common parking offences by 25 per cent in areas where the government has jurisdiction.

These included parking after a ticket has expired and stopping in a restricted parking area.

The government will also investigate a “grace period” for motorists who overstay a short time in a metered space.

With the majority of fines now issued by local councils, Mr Perrottet called on them to follow the government’s lead.

“I would hope they do the right thing by residents, ratepayers and visitors and undertake a review of their own approach to parking fines,” Mr Perrottet said.

“Fines should be a deterrent to an offence, but they also should be fair, and not used as an easy option to build a bankroll for whatever project is flavour of the day.”

A spokeswoman for Shellharbour City Council said it “would be guided by the pending changes in the legislation”.

She said the state government was responsible for policing parking at Killalea but everywhere else was within council’s jurisdiction.

In the last financial year, Shellharbour City Council issued 1288 parking-related fines.

In the last financial year, council issued 1288 parking-related fines.

In that time the council received $306,000 in fine payments for all sorts of offences; the council spokeswoman said parking fines would account for 80 per cent of that total.

However, even if the council were to cut the fines by 25 per cent, it wouldn’t mean each of those 1288 people would have to pay less.

“It should be noted that the majority of the fines that council issued do not fall into the 10 listed fines that the state government are considering reducing,” the council spokeswoman said.

“The majority of fines issued by council relate to school zones and disabled parking breaches.”

None of the 10 fines the government plans to cut deal with school zones or disabled parking.

A Wollongong City Council spokeswoman said Lord Mayor Gordon Bradbery needed to first consider the implications of the changes proposed by the government.

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