Ulster Unionist MLA John Stewart has described the delay in getting a parking bay for a disabled constituent as ‘absurd.’
In a statement, Mr. Stewart said: “For the second time over the past year, I have come across delays in getting disabled parking bays provided for disabled constituents.
“While I understand that there is a process to go through and that there has to be an opportunity for local objections to be considered, the excuses I have received for the delays are incredibly frustrating.
“Last year, I was told that a delay in providing an elderly constituent of mine in Carrickfergus with a parking bay was due to there being no minister in place at Stormont.
“A similar excuse has been used to explain a delay in extending double yellow lines near a school.
“How can a simple decision on whether to extend some double yellow lines depend upon a minister being in post in the NI Executive? It is absurd.
“These are not major decisions of public policy which was the issue highlighted in the High Court last year.
“There seems to be a blockage in the system where locally important, but regionally insignificant, measures are not being progressed because of red tape.
“The latest example I am aware of is in central Larne where an application for a disabled parking bay in a residential street near the town centre has taken over a year and is waiting for sign off from the Permanent Secretary – that’s the top civil servant- in the Department for Infrastructure.
“Whilst there are good reasons for arguing that we need ministers back at Stormont to make important decisions, painting double yellow lines and parking bays are surely not amongst them.”
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