The staggering cost of issuing invalid parking tickets

OF the fines issued by Camden Council for alleged parking contraventions in 2006/7, 29,833 were successfully challenged. That represents 6.8 per cent, or one in 15, of 434,646 fines the council attempted to impose. This supports my view and my experience

OF the fines issued by Camden Council for alleged parking contraventions in 2006/7, 29,833 were successfully challenged. That represents 6.8 per cent, or one in 15, of 434,646 fines the council attempted to impose.

This supports my view and my experience that parking fines are issued speculatively to generate revenue. In my case the council tried to fine me £80 even though I had correctly used visitors' parking permits. It was later withdrawn.

I would like people to consider the cost to taxpayers of this volume of invalid fines. If we assume that each incorrectly issued fine consumes an hour of employees' time, then in one year a total of 29,833 working hours, or 3,729 working days, or 14 working years (excluding holidays) are taken up by dealing with incorrect fines.

If the employees undertaking this task are paid say £18,000 a year, the minimum cost to the public in taxation is £258,161 per year, a scandalous waste of public money and resources.


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Then we have to consider the cost in time, money and resources to those who are fined for no good reason. When you look at the scale of invalid parking fines issued by Camden Council - 29,833 a year or 573 every week - it is possible to appreciate the enormous amount of time which Camden Council forces members of the public to waste.

All these people should be compensated for the time they are forced to devote to challenging this tidal wave of invalid tickets.

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They have no choice but to object - the alternative leads eventually to even heavier fines and later bailiffs on the doorstep. That is why Camden Council's covert and illegal parking policy should be exposed and stopped.

JAMES AKHURST

Netherhall Gardens, NW3

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