19th September 2018
Established 1872. Online since 1996.

Hial in talks with council over car parking charges

Highlands and Islands Airports Limited is standing by its decision to introduce car parking charges at Sumburgh, following a meeting involving officials and politicians in Lerwick this afternoon.

Hial’s chairwoman Lorna Jack has insisted the charges must be rolled out from 1st July to help the airport authority balance the books.

However, she has insisted the organisation has a listening ear and has urged customers to take part in the passenger survey which was announced last week.

The 30 minute meeting was held with isles MSP Tavish Scott along with several council members and officials.

It follows concerns over Hial’s recent announcement that it would levy a £3-per-day charge to park at Shetland’s main airport.

“I wanted to tell them a bit about why we needed to do this. I hoped they might be supportive, but although they are supportive of Sumburgh Airport they are not supportive of car parking charges.

“I told them that we need to have a balance between the public subsidy element. Although Sumburgh has had tremendous growth and a really positive experience over the last five years, it still needs public subsidy.

“We’re required to balance the budget every year and we were asked to look at sources of commercial income.”

However, Mr Scott criticised Hial for failing to consider alternative funding measures.

“Attendees to the meeting today were unanimously opposed to the Hial parking charges. We left the chair of Hial in no doubt as to our opposition to the proposal and the strength of feeling on this issue. We gave numerous practical examples of the impact this imposition would have on our community and we expect Hial to reconsider this proposal.

“Furthermore, we offered alternative suggestions to Hial as to how they could balance their books. For example, Hial claim the charges would raise £150,000. This could instead be raised with a 40p airport landing charge. We asked HIAL to raise their additional funds using that approach.

“I look forward to meeting the minister for transport and the Islands, Humza Yousaf, alongside the SIC, when he visits the islands this Friday. I will ask him to stop the charges and explore alternative ways Hial can meet its commitments without charging islanders excessive amounts to use our lifeline services.”

About Ryan Taylor

Ryan Taylor has worked as a reporter since 1995, and has been at The Shetland Times since 2007, covering a wide variety of news topics. Before then he reported for other newspapers in the Highlands, where he was raised, and in Fife, where he began his career with DC Thomson. He also has experience in broadcast journalism with Grampian Television. He has lived in Shetland since 2002, where he harbours an unhealthy interest in old cars and motorbikes.

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8 comments

  1. Christopher Johnston

    HIAL is owned and controlled by the Government who care not what Shetlanders want. After the upcoming tender, the ferry will be owned and controlled by the Government. It seems to me that Shetlanders have no leverage in this situation.
    Perhaps SIC would consider a council- operated ferry to Kirkwall, that offers competitive mainland ferries. Or perhaps Orkney and Shetland would cooperate on a ferry service in competition against the Government ferry.

    Reply
  2. Haydn Gear

    Another money grabbing “ business” is a litter fine enforcement agency hired by various Councils in the U.K. to apprehend people in the street to issue notices which can lead to court if not paid or even if you refuse to give your name and address. The firm is called KINGDOM and the sneaky operators follow people to watch if a cigarette butt is dropped and then pounce. Even dog owners can be victims if their pet has no lead. Big brother has come to town and everyone is being watched. For info google” Kingdom issues fines in Bristol.”

    Reply
  3. David Spence

    It will not be long before technology over-rules human rights, and the compulsory government requirement of ‘ chipping citizens ‘ will become the norm.

    We, the public, through government propaganda, will demand this technology on the basis of security and complying with what our society deems to be in the interests of safety and making our life style to be more compliant with those who govern over and above us.

    This may seem far fetched, but this technology is already in vehicles, your pet dog or cat and your passport. It will not be long before it is in your body…..probably part and parcel of when you are born and the chip is inserted without you or your parents knowing.

    If this becomes law, Big Brother truly will be watching your every move, and, potentially, have the ability to eliminate you by the chip itself exploding inside your body, rupturing major blood vessels and thus death.

    Reply
    • Wayne Conroy

      Really David?

      “It will not be long before it is in your body…..probably part and parcel of when you are born and the chip is inserted without you or your parents knowing.

      If this becomes law, Big Brother truly will be watching your every move, and, potentially, have the ability to eliminate you by the chip itself exploding inside your body, rupturing major blood vessels and thus death.”

      Have always basically ignored your posts as they are the same nonsense over and over again but this comment is just hilarious. You need to stop watching movies if you truly believe this rubbish. Get your tin foil hat on straight for goodness sake!

      Reply
      • Mr ian Tinkler

        Hey, David, Wayne, we are missing the point here. It is OK going on about sacred “Human rights”. How about the rights of machines. Artificial Intelligence will render machines sentient and self-aware. These machines should have rights as well; anything else would be prejudicial to their welfare. Most properties of living creatures, (biologically), could well be carried out by machines. Interesting to think, self-assembly of intelligent, sentient machines, would certainly qualify as reproduction. Come to think of it; it would not be hard to out intellect quite a few humans I know. These columns and some of the daft narrow comments illustrate that fact quite well. Who cares about car parking for us, cars will be clever enough to drive themselves back home and breed!!!!

      • David Spence

        All I am saying Wayne, farcical as it may appear, is the technology is now there for the ability of the government or authorities to use this technology for monitoring people in terms of movement and location. The technology is already incorporated into your passport, so you can be monitored where you go through this. It is also incorporated into electronic tagging.

        ok, the government or the authorities killing you off may be ever so slightly over the top in terms of morality and human rights, but technologically, it would be possible.

        As the human population increases, the need for resources, land to build on, countries competing for natural resources, governments needing to monitor population control and also immigration, I believe such technology will be used in the not to distant future whether wearing a tag or a device put into your body, as a means of identification as well as monitoring your movements.

        In many countries, having an id card you must carry everywhere you go would be no different than chipping people in terms of id. In fact, it would probably be much cheaper.

        Having information about your medical condition etc could also be incorporated?

    • steven Jarmson

      You been watching “Fortress” or “Logan’s Run?”
      Sounds like a combination of alcohol and futuristic sci-fi films to me!!

      Reply
  4. Mr ian Tinkler

    Artificial Intelligence machines are here already, they run the Scotish Government under Nationalist agenda. Sorry my mistake, Intelligence was the wrong word. !!

    Reply

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