Friday, May 28, 2010

How many councils have illegal CPZs? How many consultations were flawed?

Flawed consultations. Big, unwieldy CPZs. How many councils ignored Annex E of the Operational Guidance to Local Authorities on Parking Policy and Enforcement?
How many will pay the price for being reckless and indifferent towards their legal responsibilities. No-one is above the law and, as Justice Bean stated, when referring to the consequences of a local authority failing to comply:
" Let the heavens fall and justice prevail."

The High Court case has shone a very bright spotlight on the parking enforcement industry and council's behaviour in particular, especially when it comes to raising hard cash from enforcement. There is a great deal more to come ...

What must also be borne in mind is that Kingston Council were one of the four London Boroughs who added an unlawful credit card surcharge to their PCNs. That matter is also before the High Court in Camden v The Parking Adjudicator next month. The argument regarding the lawfulness of the credit card surcharge was ours and the Chief Adjudicator agreed with the point that this rendered the PCN unlawful.

Should Camden lose there will be far reaching consequences financially as they too will have been unjustly enriched and will have to refund the money.

CPZ ruling could cost Kingston Council
Friday 28th May 2010

By Clare Buchanan »
This week, campaigner Neil Herron, is taking Sunderland Council to the High Court in a bid to abolish Britain’s Controlled Parking Zones (CPZs). Successful or not, the consequences could prove momentous to Kingston’s residents and roads.

Nearly a quarter of Kingston’s roads are marked as CPZs, and in 2009-10, 42,426 parking fines were issued in the borough.

Mr Herron argued that large CPZ, such as Kingston’s, are not only misleading and confusing for drivers, but also unlawful, resulting in fines which he argued were invalid.

He said: “The council has a duty to comply with the law, which states CPZs should be 12 streets or less. The bigger and bigger CPZs do not comply with the law.”

Without CPZs it is likely that the roads of Kingston would turn to chaos.

Councillor Dave Ryder-Mills said: “The main problems would be in the town centre, where originally CPZs were introduced to give protection to local residents so that they had a hope to park. They would be the ones who suffer, and there would no doubt be several knock-on effects.”

If Mr Herron is successful, the £2,030,413 raised by Kingston Council from parking fines in the year 2008-9, could be overturned, with local residents lining up to pocket the money.

Kingston’s current parking fines range from £30 to £100 per offence. While some have said these are necessary to enforce parking laws, others suggested the fines were stealth taxes for councils to make more money.

Mr Herron, who faces 39 penalty notices, has re-mortgaged his home, put his car, adorned with yellow lines and a personalised F1NED numberplate for sale and set up Parking Appeals ltd, in his one man bid to “decriminalise British parking”.

Mr Herron said: “Justice has to come. Where there is a heavy price we have to stand up and be counted, it is down to members of the public and local media to stop this disturbing state of affairs.”

Mr Herron’s sacrifices are just a small part of the funds necessary for the controversial test case, in his crusade to reform Britain’s parking laws.

Coun Ryder-Mills said: “Hopefully we have reached the limit with the CPZs, however there is always pressure on the next road and the next road to extend. Perhaps we will be able to start to make CPZs limited in time, for example Norbiton road is now limited between certain times.”

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hey Neil,

great job that you have noticed the problems with CPZ. I too am battling it one ticket at the time, at the present with Kensington and Chelsea. The entry sign to the CPZ zone is 2 miles from where I parked and barely visible. Let me know if you need any help with campaigning.


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