Who is responsible?
Is it malfeasance (deliberately committing the act) or misfeasance (through ignorance or stupidity)?
Will there be more serious charges of obtaining money by deception?
What other offences have been committed under the Theft (Amendment) Act 1996?
The clock is ticking ... the NCP regime is on borrowed time ... more to be revealed.
City Treasurer's Department
Sunderland City Council
Further to our telephone conversation (1.50pm Friday 26th August 2005) I would be grateful for a response to the following questions ( obviously the questions to the City Treasurer are dependent on the answers from Parking Services to questions 1-7):
Questions for Parking Services / City Solicitor
1. Can the Council confirm that on or around November 2003 Parking Services / NCP / Sunderland Council became aware that they had been issuing tickets to Disabled Motorists / Disability Badge Holders in Loading Bays unlawfully?
2. How was it brought to your attention and who was made aware?
3. Why did you not immediately make this public and offer to refund the money?
4. Did Sunderland Council issue a notice to NCP to desist from issuing further tickets as they had no lawful authority to do so as the offence committed was one of obstruction under Section 137 of the 1980 Highways Act and not covered by the 1991 Road Traffic Act, therefore the Parking Attendants had no powers to issue such tickets?
If so, who issued the notice and to whom?
5. Can you confirm the number of tickets that had been issued by Parking Attendants prior to you becoming aware that they had been issued unlawfully and the number that have been issued since? Can you also confirm the Offence Code?
6. Can you please provide a full list of all instances where Sunderland Council have been made aware of incorrect legislation and incorrect signage and what actions have been taken? If no action has been taken to correct the legislation or the signage were explicit instructions issued to NCP and their Parking Attendants to desist from issuing tickets for the same offence?
7. Are there any other mistakes, errors, inaccuracies that Parking Services are aware of but have not yet made public with regard to the parking regime in operation?
8. Can you please provide all the information (under the Freedom of Information Act 2000) of all the evidence, including consultations, supplied to the Secretary of State with regard to Statutory Instrument 2002 No. 3266 The Road Traffic (Permitted Parking Area and Special Parking Area) (City of Sunderland) Order 2002 and all communications and discussions between Sunderland City Council and the Secretary of State regarding Sunderland City Council's parking regime from 1999 to present day?
9. How did the failure to implement a Taxi Rank Order come to notice in 2003?
10. Can you please provide a copy of the notice sent to NCP or minutes of any meeting with NCP officials on or around 31st October 2003?
11. Why was no decision made in November 2003 to immediately issue refunds regarding monies unlawfully obtained in relation to the failure to implement the Taxi Rank Orders?
12. Why after nearly two years have the correct Taxi Rank Orders not been put in place?
13. Are you going to refer the matter to the Police for investigation? If not, why not?
14. Are you going to ask the District Auditor to conduct a full investigation into the Parking Services / NCP operation? If not, why not?
15. Can you please provide copies (under the Freedom of Information Act 2000) details of all communications, written, e-mail and telephone calls between Sunderland City Council and the National Parking Adjudication Service?
16. Under the Data Protection Act ( for the name Neil Herron and the address 12 Frederick Street Sunderland, SR1 1NA and/or 39 The Westlands, Sunderland, SR4 7RP) can you provide details of all communications, written, e-mail and telephone between the following departments Sunderland City Council Solicitor's Office, Development and Regeneration (including Parking Services) and the City Treasurer's office, and bewteen any of thses departments and NCP?
Questions to the City Treasurer
16. If any of the questions above reveal further errors by Sunderland City Council's Parking regime can you please provide details for each of the financial years (2002-3 / 2003-4 / 2004-5) for the amount of monies received from Parking Fines for the offences detailed above?
17. I relation to the income of £22,240 (2003-4) and £630 (2004-5) when were you ( City Treasurer's Department) first made aware that these monies had been obtained unlawfully as the result of Sunderland City Council's failure to put any Taxi Rank Orders in place?
18. Have you been made aware of any other monies unlawfully received since the inception of the 'decriminalised' parking regime?
19. Can you please provide details of the income received by Sunderland City Council from Code 45 offences in the financial year 2002-3?
Further questions will obviously arise dependent on the answers received and as more evidence of malpractice comes to light.
Many thanks for your prompt attention and professionalism in response to all enquiries to date.
cc. Bob Rayner, City Solicitor
cc. Earl Belshaw, Parking Services
cc. Phil Barrett, Director of Development and Regeneration
cc. Cameron Waddle, Audit Commission
Friday, August 26, 2005
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