A "REGRETTABLE" decision to outsource parking enforcement has been made by Cotswold District Council’s cabinet.

Sounds of dismay erupted from the public gallery of last week’s meeting at Trinity Road when a "cold, business case" was made by CDC’s cabinet to hand over off-street parking enforcement to an external contractor.

The move has been made following Gloucestershire County Council’s decision to outsource on-street parking enforcement to the same contractor, APCOA, in December 2012.

It is estimated to save CDC around £83,000, with the service costing £908,614 per year compared with in-house costs of £991,882.

But it could potentially put the jobs of CDC’s current parking team in jeopardy.

"We all collectively recognise and value the expertise of the council’s staff and the excellent service they have provided," Cllr David Fowles, cabinet member for environment, said. "But if we’re looking at the cold business case, I feel we’ve only got one decision to make."

Details of the handover, which will come into force from April 1, are yet to be confirmed. It is unclear yet how staff and services will be transferred and if drivers will still be able to pay parking fines at the Trinity Road office.

Addressing the council’s parking staff, CDC leader Cllr Lynden Stowe said: "I hope it will all be as seamless as possible and you find that it doesn’t impact on your lives."