Mexborough could face parking charges at its Doncaster Council car park, the mayor has warned.
Mayor Ros Jones says she will keep parking free until work on regenerating the markets and High Street is finished, but says she cannot promise to keep it free indefinitely.
The warning comes after Mexborough Coun Andy Pickering raised concerns over the policy of charging in Mexborough’s multi-storey car park.
He told Doncaster Council that since charges were passed in the 2013/14 budget, circumstances have changed, and Mexborough no longer has a town centre supermarket.
He said: “Mexborough has five car parks, three chargeable, operated by private companies, the current policy leaves Mexborough with only one free car park, at a time when neighbouring towns have no charging and are having new supermarkets constructed.
“Mexborough has benefited from a £500,000 investment to assist regeneration. Would Mayor Jones be prepared to re-examine the issue of charging in order to give that investment the best chance of success?”
Coun Jones said she and her cabinet were absolutely committed to the regeneration and economic success of Mexborough, and making sure that it was able to thrive was vital to the borough.
About £500,000 has been invested in the regeneration of Mexborough Market and upgrading the High Street.
But she said: “I certainly recognise your concerns. We are in difficult economic and financial circumstances, something that has been seen on Mexborough High Street with the closure of shops such as Tesco.
“That is why I put a hold on the introduction of the parking charges that were agreed by Council in the budget. I am determined not to undermine the work we are doing to boost the town.
“We have already made some improvements to the multi-storey car park and we will be completing those works later this year, when the lift is brought back into use.”
She said a cut in Government grants to the council from £270m per year to £148m per year meant she could not make an indefinite commitment not to introduce parking charges in Mexborough. She will keep the situation under review.
She added: “However, the car park will remain free whilst work is being undertaken and we allow the High Street to benefit from the market regeneration project.”