THERE'S a long road ahead before Fife Council can start enforcing the pavement parking ban.

The new laws came in last December but the local authority admitted they've still got plenty to do before they start applying them.

At last week's full council meeting Lib Dem councillor Jonny Tepp asked what work needs to be completed before the council can start enforcing the ban.

Transportation spokesperson Cllr Altany Craik replied: "Work is currently ongoing within the roads and transportation service to identify and assess possible exemption areas and mitigation measures for displacement parking across Fife as part of the pavement parking ban.

"Once this is completed a report will be presented to the cabinet committee to seek approval from members regarding the principle measures to be introduced.

Dunfermline Press: The Footway Parking Bill, with drivers facing fines of £100 for parking on the pavement, became law on December 11 last year but it's not currently being enforced in Fife. The Footway Parking Bill, with drivers facing fines of £100 for parking on the pavement, became law on December 11 last year but it's not currently being enforced in Fife. (Image: Newsquest)

"Following cabinet agreement, area committees will consider the proposals for their areas as part of the statutory traffic regulation order process.

"In parallel, operational matters such as updating of parking management, and back office IT systems will be required.

"Specific training for parking enforcement staff and any on-site signing and lining measures will also be implemented."

READ MORE: Free bulky uplift scheme has had 'no impact' on fly-tipping in the Kingdom

Cllr Tepp said: "In my ward alone there are 12 streets in consultation with the waste management team where the bin lorries would be unable to access if cars were parking on the street.

"Can we be assured that you're consulting with the waste team and exceptions necessary for them to operate will be in place before we go any further?"

Cllr Craik said: "Yes is the short answer. Obviously the aspiration of pavements is for people which is a fairly sensible one and based on good theory.

"However geography is quite often unhelpful for us and some of of our streets will just not be able to do it so that's why that whole process will need to be thought about, so the law of unintended consequences doesn't end up with streets that can't get their bins done, or fire engines and ambulances in or, heaven forfend, your Amazon deliveries.

"All of this will be taken into account."

The Footway Parking Bill prohibits pavement parking, double parking and parking at dropped kerbs and offenders face a £100 fine.

But on day one of the new laws coming into force not one council was ready to enforce them.

Fife said there were a number of issues, including the penalty charge notices which are currently handed out for parking offences not being "fit for the purpose" of fining pavement parkers.

Council officers even suggested that they could opt out and choose not enforce the law.

The toughest task has been given to the consultants who are having to survey "many many hundreds of kilometres" of roads and streets to identify all of the "areas where it really wouldn't be helpful to have vehicles moved from the pavement onto the road to park".

And, where there are exemptions, it transpired that the council will have to paint lines on miles and miles of pavements so drivers know where they CAN park before a ban can begin.

Cllr Craik added that, as the work was ongoing, full costs have yet to be confirmed.

He went on: "However, the known outline costs to date are estimated as: promotion of exemption orders, £14,000; signing and lining estimate, about £70,000; parking management IT about £10,000; printing costs for new penalty charge notices and so forth, around £4,000.

"The mitigation costs are the one where the devil will be in the details, we don't have a number for that yet.

"The Scottish Government have awarded us £188,000 to undertake the work to develop the approaching pavement parking ban and survey all the streets in Fife.

"In 2023-24, £101,000 of the funding has been utilised for consultants to undertake the development work.

"A request has been made to the Scottish Government to carry over the remaining funds for ongoing work."