The Land Transport Authority (L.T.A.) has put to rest claims that parking meters in Apia is part of the Government’s desperate efforts to collect revenue to pay off its foreign debt.
The Authority responsible for rolling out the plan has done this on a Facebook post which responds to feedback from members of the community – both negative and positive.
But it is the last point of a nine-bullet point message that has had people talking, even sharing the L.T.A. post.
“Revenue gained from parking meters will go towards road upgrade/maintenance; not to pay for loans in China,” the post reads.
The statement does not elaborate on Samoa’s loans in China.
But the issue has been a controversial topic of late, with the latest “official figure” showing that Samoa owes China more than $400million, making China the biggest creditor.
Samoa’s foreign debt stands at $1.10 billion.
The following is what the L.T.A Facebook post says about the parking meters:
“Land Transport Authority appreciates the constructive feedback and queries raised by the public regarding the parking meters. Further information is summarized below:
1. Parking Meters will be effective in September 2018
2. Why parking meters? Travelling public into Apia are finding it difficult to find car parks directly in front of businesses or offices in Apia as they have been occupied by vehicles parked for longer hours. As a result, vehicles have had to circle many times before finding a car park which has contributed to traffic congestion in Apia. Parking meters should alleviate this problem.
3. You do not have to park at parking spaces that are metered. There are parking spaces in Apia that are not metered (free parking space). Your choice.
4. LTA will pilot for the first 6 months the use of 8 parking meters which have been installed at car parks in front of ANZ Bank until SNPF Plaza. After the pilot, LTA plans to continue installation of parking meters at other areas in Apia
5. Operating Hours/Days: Mondays to Fridays 8am – 4pm. LTA may enforce the use of parking meters on Saturdays but that will be confirmed at a later date.
6. 1 tala for 0- 15mins therefore 4 tala for an hour. For 8 hours it will cost 32 tala.
7. The parking meters only accepts coins- 2 tala, 1 tala, 50 sene, 20 sene and 10 sene
8. Monitoring and enforcement will be a joint collaboration by LTA and Ministry of Police
9. Revenue gained from parking meters will go towards road upgrade/maintenance; not to pay for loans in China
LAND TRANSPORT AUTHORITY