Council election candidates clash over parking ticket
The local elections have warmed up with two candidates engaging in a debate over a parking ticket and policy over councillors paying for parking.
Phil Wynn published the above image apparently of a car ticketed in a town centre car park on Saturday morning kicking off the row asking the public:”Do you think WCBC councillors should be exempt from having to pay to use Wrexham Council car-parks?”
In January 2018 Wrexham.com reported that as the administration of Wrexham Council were looking at bringing in parking charges for disabled people and at country parks, they acknowledged the freebie perk of parking for themselves for nothing was no longer an acceptable position.
Although not named, Carrie Harper replied to Phil Wynn’s question, “No Phil, do you? Do you happen to think it’s a bit odd to come back to your car to find it ticketed and with the council leader standing directly in front of it? Now who could have taken this picture I wonder. What a mystery eh! Thanks for the evidence 😂”
Phil Wynn is standing for Brynyffynnon as an Independent, up against Peter Derrick from Plaid Cymru and Barbara Lloyd of Welsh Labour.
Carrie Harper is standing in Queensway for Plaid Cymru, up against Sion Edwards of Welsh Labour and Joseph Wojcik-Jones of the Welsh Conservatives.
The exchange between the pair carried on with Phil Wynn saying: “I paid £1.80 to park up in the Chester St car-park on Saturday to help set up the street market so like you I agree WCBC councillors ought to set an example”
Carrie Harper replied: “Like using public money to resurface the council car park when parts of the borough look like the surface of the moon? That sort of example? Careful going for the moral high ground there Phil as an Exec Board member 🤔”
The debate kept going, with Phil Wynn adding: “Carrie having admitted it was your car that was ticketed then my advice is stick your hand up and stop digging a hole for yourself.”
Carrie Harper replied: “Yes it’s my car Phil, yes there’s a ticket on it that will be paid. I’m asking why the council leader was standing in front of it on Sat? Who took the pic you’ve posted please?”
Phil Wynn appeared to point the matter towards Mark Pritchard: “You clearly need to ask Cllr Pritchard. We all make mistakes but to turn yourself into the victim is a bit rich.”
Carrier Harper re-asked: “I’m asking you, you’ve posted this. Getting a parking ticket is hardly the crime of the century, the circumstances are a tad strange though. Who took the pic? You must know….”
Speaking to us this morning Mr Wynn shed some light on how the image emerged: “Mark Pritchard parked his vehicle in Guildhall car park, and came and joined us at the street market, returning to his car he clocked the car next to him was ticketed and had a vote Carrie Harper sticker in it and he shared the story with me.
“I appreciate we are all absent minded at times, and as a grey suited politician I get that. However people are cynical towards us , and expect us all to work by the rules we set.
“She is happy to pay her parking ticket, I was happy to pay for my parking to park up in Chester Street car park as I was in town before 11am to help setup the street market in Henblas Street.”
The row is rumbling on this morning with further posts on both candidates social media:
Carrie as a grey suited Cllr I fully get how easy it is to be absent minded. There is however cynicism against Cllrs being stoked by yourself as we enter the election season and folk rightly expect their Cllrs to live be the rules we set. Bye the way plse stop playing the victim.
— Phillip Wynn (@PhillipWynn2) April 11, 2022
Read the room Phil, any cynicism towards Cllrs is because of behaviour like yours. Shocking tweet from the lead member for Education. Who took that pic of my car?
Seeing as you’re so obsessed with my daily activities, here’s a special pic just for you 😉 pic.twitter.com/nB2B0eI0FM
— Carrie Harper 🏴 (@CarrieAHarper) April 11, 2022
Wrexham.com has long reported on the issue of councillors parking, initially being a ‘perk’ of the job and free, then latterly in 2019 moving to a vastly discounted permit based system. We reported at the introduction of that scheme in 2019, that was slowly brought in, “Councillors are due to pay around 39p a day for prime town centre parking, a sum we have previously been told is aimed at ‘not being too much of a financial burden’ for them.”
The announcement that councillors were set to pay for parking was made alongside the famous quote that the parking area used by councillors would categorically not get resurfaced. It did.
You can only take part in the May elections if you are registered to vote, and time is running out. It’s quick and easy – it takes just five minutes online at www.gov.uk/registertovote.
We’ve invited all candidates to take part in a Q&A on our website, so if you want to find out who wants to represent your local community you can keep checking our page to see if your local candidates have filled theirs in! Wrexham.com/election2022/
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