The Guyana Teachers Union (GTU) is describing the parking meter within the city as an additional financial burden on its members and plans to bring this concern to the attention City Hall within the next few weeks.
Thus, it has signalled its intention to meet with the Mayor and City Council within three weeks to discuss the likely hardship the parking meter project will have on teachers who are owners of vehicles.
Like every other citizen, the teachers who are attached to schools within central Georgetown will be faced with the 50 dollars for every 15 minutes of parking with a maximum time purchase of up to six hours per day.
The Teachers Union General Secretary, Coretta McDonald told News Room that “Teachers have been calling since the idea of the parking meter started coming around, teachers have been calling trying to find out what is going to be in place for them because teachers have been looking at their meager salaries and they are saying we already cannot balance ourselves with the salaries we are receiving much more to add additional cost to what you already receiving it is going to be extremely difficult for teachers to foot that cost, teachers have already signal many of them will have to leave their cars at home and use public transportation which will have its own effect on not only the education system but the teachers themselves.”
According to the schools are already limited with space for students to have recreational activities much less parking for teachers.
She said because of the many uncertainties surrounding the parking meter project the Teachers Union was waiting until all is clearly defined before making their concerns known.
“We recognized that this whole parking meter issue coming from the President it would have been on hold for review, we haven’t heard anything about the review and any pronouncement coming from the review and so we took it for granted that this parking meter issue would have been placed on hold for one, the consultation and two, for a review to be done for what was done there before hence our reason for not approaching the City Council earlier, but since it’s going to be rolled out pretty soon then we will have to meet with the authorities there” she told News Room.
Ms. McDonald believes more consultation is needed as meeting with one or two groups is not a true reflection of such a process since they do not speak for the populist.
It is estimated that it will now cost approximately $24,000 +VAT per month for a teacher to park during school hours which is usually six hours daily and can be more in some cases.
Aside from schools, there are other government offices and facilities that will be faced with similar concerns for public servant employees who drive to work.
Smart City Solutions is looking to erect 157 meters within the areas of Camp to Water Streets and from Quamina to Hadfield Streets.
At the moment citizens are not required to pay to park but become familiar with the process that will be done using a prepaid card.