|Daily Telegraph - Tuesday 26 September, 2006
Safety is second to revenue
By Kelvin Bissett & Larissa Cummings
HALF of all parking fines issued by councils are for the harmless act of staying too long -- while offences endangering lives are weakly enforced.
The only offence with safety implications that was strongly enforced was disobey no stopping sign (144,090 tickets).
The analysis of the parking fines comes as The Daily Telegraph can reveal the top streets in NSW where motorists are caught.
Topping the list are four streets in the Sydney CBD -- Pitt, Castlereagh, Kent and Sussex Streets.
Waverley Council, infamous for its aggressive fines regime, has four streets in the top 12.
The latest revelations come after The Daily Telegraph reported yesterday that councils increased their record parking fines haul by $22 million last year, taking their total revenue to $116 million.
Premier Morris Iemma responded to the parking fines frenzy, calling on councils to enforce parking fines fairly.
``It should never be about revenue raising. It's all about road safety and traffic flows,'' he said.
But he rejected a call by the NRMA for councils to be stripped of their power to issue fines.
``We're not going to divert front-line police to taking back that responsibility,'' he said.
``Councils need to ensure that the parking rules are enforced, that the law is enforced in a balanced manner.''
Pedestrian Council chairman Harold Scruby said he believed councils were obsessed by ``revenue raising, meters and time zones'' rather than protecting lives.
Mr Scruby said councils should be focused on enforcing the law on no stopping zones, bus zones, pedestrian crossings, double parking and footpath parking.
Top streets for parking tickets 2005-06