End of the problem?

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PROBLEM parking in East Renfrewshire could become a thing of the past in a matter of months.

From April 2 this year, responsibility for enforcing ERC’s parking regulations will switch from local police to East Renfrewshire council’s community wardens.

As a result of the Scottish government decriminalising certain parking offences, the council will have civil powers to issue penalties for static parking offences, to ensure smooth traffic flow and improve safety on East Ren roads.

A number of councils, such as neighbouring Glasgow and Renfrewshire, are currently undertaking decriminalised parking enforcement (DPE) schemes.

As in Glasgow, the fine for illegal parking in East Ren will be £60, with a 14 day payment discount to £30.

The community wardens will be issued with the latest electronic equipment to record the offence and issue the ticket.

They will have an ERC uniform and parking attendant’s hat with a unique badge to legally identify them as parking attendants while performing parking duties.

SNP’s Netherlee, Stamperland and Williamwood councillor Tony Buchanan, the convener for infrastructure and sustainable growth, has assured residents the move is to benefit everyone, “not as a money making scheme”.

He said: “The free flow of traffic is essential to ensure sustainable economic growth within East Renfrewshire.

“Parking control and regulation is designed to help people conduct business and to make the streets safer for drivers, pedestrians and all other road users.

“We wish to encourage prompt payment and a dedicated phone line for card payment is available.

“We also want to make it easy for motorists to park safely and legally and understand the importance of traffic safety”.

Clarkston Conservative councillor Gordon McCaskill believes the move is “very neccessary”.

He told The Extra: “We have not had a traffic warden on a regular basis for some considerable time.

“Parking in East Renfrewshire is out of control — in congested areas such as around schools, there is complete chaos.

“The situation in Clarkson is especially bad, so I am glad something is finally being done. Hopefully people will start parking properly and learn their lesson”.

Many residents have echoed Mr McCaskill’s sentiments on The Extra’s Facebook page.

Andy Loudon said: “There’s been little evidence of current regulations being enforced.

They need to hammer down on everyone and stop people double parking on Fenwick Road while they just pop into the shops.

“They need to be taught that putting the hazard lights on doesn’t make your car magically exempt from parking regulations!

Pam Heap added: “There are double yellow lines outside my house and across my driveway.

“People blatantly park there as they ‘just nip for their chippy’. It’s total cheek — if I could issue parking tickets myself I would do so gladly”.

n Do you think more needs to be done about parking in East Renfrewshire? Share your thoughts by e-mailing gregor.hollerin@jpress.co.uk