Free parking passes for people living near Kings University College were almost torn up by the city.

But a U-turn at city council Tuesday night meant that not only will free parking passes survive, but another area could getting them too.

The civic works committee had agreed that residents in the area of Waterloo, Huron and Richmond streets should have to pay $60 a year to park outside their homes, ending a free scheme running for six years.

But a number of councillors at the full council meeting disagreed. “This is a program that’s worked very well and I see no reason to stop it,” said Coun. Denise Brown.

She said people who pay their taxes should not have to pay a second charge to park in the street outside their homes. Couns. Nancy Branscombe, Bud Polhill and Joni Baechler agreed, and talked of parking shortages near the college.

A motion to have a public participation meeting, which would open the way to ending the free passes, lost by nine votes to three.

Coun. Branscome put forward a motion to have a meeting on a similar plan for the Trowbridge area, where there are similar problems. It was voted through unanimously.

The votes

Motion to have a public participation meeting on ending free passes near Kings University College: defeated 9-3.

Voting against: Mayor Joe Fontana and Couns. Stephen Orser and Harold Usher.

Motion to have a meeting on free parking for Trowbridge area: passed 12-0.

Absent from meeting: Couns. Sandra White, Paul Van Meergbergen and Joe Swan.

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