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News  »  Yellow lines Grove Green statement



   Yellow lines Grove Green statement    March 28, 2019

The parish council is aware that there is a lot of concern about what is happening regarding the possible yellow lines for Grovewood Drive South/Provender Way and the possible 2 hour parking restriction issue.  It is hoped that by providing a brief history and update that residents will fully understand. Some of the following information is probably a repeat of some things residents will know but recent e-mails and social media postings has identified that some residents are a bit confused.

 

Maidstone Borough Council can install parking restrictions when it organises Resident Parking Zones but in the case of the general highway Kent County Council is the Local Highway Authority and it is responsible for approving installing yellow lines. The Parish Council has no legal powers to install yellow lines. 

 

Two years ago, in conjunction with St John’s School, the parish council approached County Councillor Paul Carter to try to get yellow lines at the junctions on Provender Way. Cllr Paul Carter has a devolved members budget which can pay for small works and which, if used, means that the work is done by KCC. County Councillor’s devolved budgets can no longer be spent on yellow lines.

In 2016 the Parish Council attempted to get KCC to install yellow lines on Grovewood Drive South and this was refused

As you may be aware due to continuing reductions in local government funding KCC have to make tough decisions on where to improve traffic and road safety in local areas. This means that we have to say no more than we like especially if the request won’t reduce casualties. I can confirm that the current safety record around this area has been checked and does not meet our current criteria for the implementation of alterations to the public highway”. KCC response 13 September 2019.

The Parish Council’s Environment Committee has been attempting to find a way to get yellow lines in but is finding it difficult to make KCC change its rather strict policy.

One attempt was to try to get some form of parking control (yellow lines or parking restrictions) via the STEM school planning application but the Planning Inspector did not approve a condition on this in his approval of the planning application as he (the Planning Inspector) actually stated that there was sufficient parking provision at Grove Green. The parish council successfully negotiated a possible voluntary contribution from the developer of the STEM school and as requested by residents, who were fearful of what would happen if yellow lines were put along the length of Grovewood Drive South, undertook a public consultation.  This public consultation highlighted a number of issues; one of which was that residents did not want to have any form of parking restrictions if that meant that they or their visitors would be affected nor would they pay for any permits. All this information was supplied to KCC with a request for a discussion on whether some additional minor yellow lines could be installed to try to manage some of the problems being experienced. This request for a discussion has still not been answered by KCC.

Whilst the planning applications for the two schools at Popesfield was being investigated the Parish Council identified that a Section 106 payment, relating to the original KIMS development, had not been claimed by MBC, this payment can only be used to deal with parking issues in Grove Green/Vinters. As KCC refuses many suggestions stating lack of funding the Parish Council agreed that this S106 needed to be claimed and used in Grove Green. Since January 2019 the Parish Council has been attempting to get MBC or KCC to claim the funding and to have discussion on using this to fund more yellow lines in Grove Green, including areas of Grovewood Drive South.  All of this information can be found in the Environment Committee agenda and minutes which are available from the Parish Council’s website. This effort to get KCC to put in additional yellow lines is on going and KCC has promised to come back to the parish council once clarification on the S106 has been obtained, hopefully next week.

Certain remarks and statements have been made about what the Parish Council has or has not done and what it plans to do and hopefully the above clarifies the situation.

As KCC is the Local Transport Authority, only it can agree and allow yellow lines to be installed and the Parish Council and Borough Councillors have been attempting to get KCC to take action. If residents wish to take the issue up with KCC directly they can do so via the KCC website www.kent.gov.uk and also with their elected member County Councillor Paul Carter paul.carter@kent.gov.uk The Parish Council is continuing to keep pressure on KCC and as residents may now appreciate it is proving a very difficult path to travel.

Unfortunately, it has become necessary to notify residents that the parish office will not reply to offensive e-mails and nor will it become involved in posting responses to social posts. It is fully understood that residents are frustrated and cross however some statements being made are not necessarily based on facts.

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