|The central city will begin charging for motorbike and bicycle parking at public hospitals from this year after a three-year fee exemption.— Photo BizLIVE
DA NANG (VNS) — The central city will begin charging for motorbike and bicycle parking at public hospitals from this year after a three-year fee exemption.
The decision was made at the city's People's Council meeting last year in a move to shore up VND14 billion (US$666,000) in funds.
Following the decision, motorbike parking fees will be charged at VND2,000 and VND1,000 for a bicycle.
Vice chairman of the city's People's Committee Vo Duy Khuong said the decision would ease pressure on the city's annual budget.
"The toll will help the city collect at least VND15 billion ($714,000) from parking fees per year. The amount will also help ease the cost of managing car parks at hospitals," Khuong said at the meeting.
He said the money from parking fees would also be used to invest in hospitals and health centres around the city.
Vice director of the city's Obstetrics and Pediatrics Hospital, Nguyen Thi Thanh Xuan said parking supply was frequently overwhelmed with more than 5,000 motorbikes and bicycles alone.
"We have to ask the city to pay for labourers and management for the car park. However, we face difficulties seeking funds for repairing or upgrading the park," she said, adding many vehicles had to park outdoors.
"The exemption for motorbikes and bicycles parking at hospitals was good for poor patients and their relatives. However, the city's budget paid a high price for this," Nguyen Thi Bich Ngoc said.
Ngoc also complained that people who were not patients or visitors were also parking their vehicles in the hospital.
Le Hong Hai, from Da Nang's General Hospital, said the hospital was planning to build an underground car park, but it had not yet been approved.
Hoang Thi Khanh Hoi, a patient at Da Nang C hospital, said free parking aimed to help poor patients at public hospitals, but caused a headache for the city's budget planners in the economic downturn.
According to Hoi, it was up to the city administration to assist poor patients with other manners.
Da Nang became the first city in Viet Nam to provide free parking at public hospitals in 2011. — VNS