The council’s ban on disabled blue badge holder access to York city centre is continuing to cost the local taxpayer, latest costs confirm.
The overall cost for security staffing of access barriers since the measures were implemented is approaching £250k, since the start of April 2020. Around half that cost is being footed by local taxpayers, and the remainder by taxpayers nationally through Government grant.
The council’s Main Opposition Labour Group Deputy Leader, Cllr Pete Kilbane said:
“The costs, both human and financial, continue to rise from the Lib Dem-Green council’s disabled blue badge holder ban. We don’t think the council has tried hard enough to find a system whereby disabled access is maintained at the same time as addressing the terrorist threat.
“The council is actually paying staff to prevent disabled people accessing the city centre while leaving the back door wide open. So far almost a quarter of a million has been spent keeping blue badge holders out, yet the council seems to be relying on terrorists obeying the highway code to prevent them driving the wrong way up Colliergate and into the heart of the city.”
“First the Lib Dem-Green administration told us the restrictions were put in place for social distancing, then they were for continental style cafes and now they are anti-terror measures. But that reason doesn’t stack up given the gaping holes. They must think we’re all daft. If Labour is elected next May we will sort this nonsense out”.
“Universal access and a secure city centre are not mutually exclusive, it just requires the political will to find a solution”.