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High Court to review parking meter agreement

The High Court on Thursday paved the way for a judicial review of the parking meter agreement, but if City Hall refuses to challenge the legal action the order will be made absolute.

Chief Justice,  Yonette Cummings- Edwards on Thursday granted an order nisi of certiorari quashing a parking meter agreement unless the Mayor and City Council and the Town Clerk show cause against the quashing of the said decision.

Legal sources said the order does  not mean that City Hall and Smart City Solutions have to cease operating the parking meters, but allows the parties an opportunity to argue their points before the court.

Based on an application made by Mohender Arjune, Reynolds granted the order against the Mayor and Councillors and the Town Clerk to show cause why the following decisions should not be quashed:

  • enter into an agreement on or around  13 May 2016 and to make any amendment thereto for the establishment of parking meters in the City of Georgetown with Smart City Solutions Inc and all acts and things thereafter which flowed from that decision
  • empowering and authorising the Town Clerk of Georgetown to sign and operationalise contracts with Smart City Solutions for the establishment of parking meters in Georgetown and all acts and those done or caused to be done  thereafter flowing from that decision
  •  anyone acting by or through them or under their directions or instruction or on their behalf to exempt persons or categories of persons from parking in Georgetown and being subject to penalties for parking the City without paying fees

The respondents have until February 27, 2017  file court papers to show cause why the order should not be quashed.

The order was issued the same day on which Movement Against Parking Meters (MAPM) held its largest protest ever outside City Hall.

MAPM wants the agreement revoked on grounds that its terms and conditions are unfair and too burdensome. They said the deal also lacks transparency and sells out the city’s parking to a foreign company.

City Hall says the deal is the best that they could have gotten in exchange for a US$10 million investment by Smart City Solutions. The Council says it will get 20 percent gross revenues.

Vexatious provisions of the agreement include an almost automatic renewal for another 20 years, the right to purchase land that has been assigned to SCS for garage parking and no liability for damage to vehicles during booting or towing.

  • Emile_Mervin

    Kudos to Justice Reynolds for slamming the brakes on this scam, even if temporarily. I e-mailed a letter to SN earlier today in response to a story on Cush’s firing, and I actually suggested the matter be addressed via court or arbitration.

    After all, we learned the deal was inked in May 2016 after Town Clerk King negotiated this deal in October or November 2015, but we don’t know if King had a lawyer present to help provide comprehension of legalese in the documents. If there was no lawyer representing City Hall, then King was railroaded by the foreign investors.

    Government should reimburse the investors based on an audit of their expenditures and send them packing. Next step: replace Chase-Green, King, Clarke and Garrett.

  • Col123

    This is not enough for the citizens who pursued the matter… The mayor and her cohorts should be required to come clean on this matter. The voters deserve to be briefed on the entire matter . If this is the best deal they could get to move the city’s finances to black, then, they are not worthy of that office… the curse of APAANu JHAATie voting should be an eye opener given the cohesion of the protestors. Even the million dollars paid COHESION minister could not bring these protesters together..

  • rudeo

    King accompanied by legal mind?….Guh suh!…..these crooks must be banned from public office permanently….the vulgarity of them wanting to drag politics into it….never thought we could have seen such mobilization for a common good….encouraging signs for wannabee presidents to come clean in governance