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Spotlight on one of NZ’s major issues - parking

Media Release – September 9, 2005

Spotlight next month on one of NZ’s major issues --- parking

With parking becoming a major issue in New Zealand's cities, next month’s national parking conference in Hamilton will attract huge interest.

The conference will showcase the best practices and the latest technologies in on-road parking controls and parking enforcement.

The conference is the shop window for local authorities, car park operators, manufacturers and suppliers activities.

New Zealand Parking Association chairman Colin Waite, from Waitakere city, said parking is becoming a more and more important issue across New Zealand.

``Parking that vehicle is only part of the journey and not the prime reason for it,’’ he said today.

``This year’ conference theme is business excellence: the driving force of the parking industry.’’

Keynote speakers include Bryan Travers from Auckland University,Professor Richard Buchanan from Massey University, Owen Lee-Cusack from Drake Personnel and Tere Ryan from the ICON Group.

Other speakers are the Ministry of Justice, Land Transport NZ, and the Ministry of Transport.

Delegates attending will be representing over 50 Local Authorities.

The trade displays will be comprehensive with suppliers from various countries exhibiting the latest parking and enforcement technology that is available to the industry".

The conference is an annual event for the NZ Parking Association which is represented by 50 territorial local authorities and one international airport company. They all carry out parking enforcement in New Zealand.

Mr Waite estimated well over a million parking fines were issued in New Zealand every year by local authorities.

He said local authorities need to be given powers to employ debt collecting agencies to collect longer overdue unpaid fines, Mr Waite said.

The annual awards for parking excellence will be presented during the conference. The awards recognise contributions to the industry as well as acknowledging struggles that some parking wardens have in their cities.

Car-parking rates as one of the great curses of the 21st century. Waite said the problem was not confined to big cities and it regularly reared its head in smaller towns, with local councils debating over inconsiderate drivers parking illegally for hours in restricted areas.

Many larger city councils are actively pursuing initiatives to reduce car use, and thus traffic and parking congestion.

ENDS

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