LETTER: M'boro CBD parking fines driving away business

LETTER TO EDITOR: I live in Hervey Bay but work in Maryborough.

That was until today.

Today I will pay my last parking fine here in Maryborough.

To be honest, it has been one fine too many and our office is closing in a week.

A wet rainy day, two cars among many empty car spaces and I arrive to find a fine complete in its plastic weather-proof pouch, placed on my windscreen.

It is a point of interest that Hervey Bay has triple the population but no parking constraints.

It is a point of interest that people who come to the Maryborough CBD are punished with a parking fine for overstaying the prescribed available time, but this is not so in Hervey Bay.

It is a point of interest that Hervey Bay is thriving and Maryborough CBD is not.

It is interesting to observe the hidden face and questionable agenda of a regional council that enforces punitive outcomes on its community, only if you attend the Maryborough business district, not Hervey Bay business district.

So to the matter of the $56 fine.

I sincerely hope your finance department has clever ways of maximising your revenue raised from fining your citizens that do come into the CBD.

Should we compare the $56 windfall the council has reaped from my fine payment to the cost to a local man from the loss of the $23,000 annual rent we paid for the office each year.

The contribution our six workers made to the local economy by shopping locally and supporting local business, losses that are not easily quantified.

But don't worry council, you have your $56.

I worry about the future of Maryborough council. Wake up and get creative for goodness sake.

Challenge the current situation, get enthusiastic, get rid of the backward thinking, people will come back to the CBD of Maryborough, we see this on market days.

Be creative and give people a reason to come back, not a reason to stay away

Don't fine them for coming and overstaying their parking time.

Encourage people to come and they will invest in the community.

There is so much more at Hervey Bay.

The other great thing about Hervey Bay, I should mention again, is people don't get fined for spending time there.

The shopping centres are buzzing, the Esplanade is busy, it is where people go now.

People are not in Maryborough investing in the community, they are shopping, eating, drinking and buying in Hervey Bay, where you can park and stay as long as you like, buy an ice cream, go for a long walk along the foreshore and return to your car and surprise, surprise no parking fine.

- Carole Jones, Urraween

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