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The majority of council-run pay and display machines in Cornwall are currently out of action because they are all full of money and there is no staff to empty them. As a result, parking in many parts of the county is currently free.
Cornwall County Council said 20 percent of pay and display machines were affected.
Philip Desmonde, cabinet member for transport, said contractors G4S were “not meeting their contractual obligations” and urgent meetings are being held to try and resolve the issue.
In an email to all councillors, Mr Desmonde said the authority could be losing thousands of pounds and explained 32 parking machines in Cornwall were filled in the last week and therefore were not making any more revenue.
Mr Desmonde wrote: “Following concerns raised in relation to the number of pay and display machines that are being reported as out of service throughout the county, I have asked officers to investigate this matter and provide me with an update.’
“The Parking Service have confirmed that the majority of machines are going out of service as a direct result of the cash collection contractors (G4S) not meeting their contractual obligations.”
He then provided a statement from G4S Parking Manager Craig Taylor, which said: “G4S have been, and are still struggling to recruit/retain the staff they need to fulfil their cash collection contract for Cornwall.
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“They would normally have approximately 15 staff cash collecting, but currently have four.”
He added that even if new staff were sourced, it could take up to six months to get them into operation.
G4S said in a statement: “Working closely with Cornwall Council, we have prioritised collections to ensure all the services we deliver proceed as planned.”
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