|Resident Permit Holders Urged to Appeal Fines After PCN Cancelled|
Council admit system failure stopped reminders being sent out
Thousands of Ealing residents who have received parking fines are being urged to appeal after the Council cancelled a PCN issued to a resident permit holder who had not renewed on time.
Ian Richardson challenged his PCN twice and posted on the EalingToday.co.uk forum that 'Common Sense has prevailed' after his second appeal to the Council has resulted in the PCN being cancelled.
He received a letter from the Council saying, "Although the PCN was issued correcly [sic], We have looked at the case in detail and we have accepted your representations on this occasion."
In another recent email highlighted on the forum, Ealing's Chief Executive Officer, Paul Najsarek, responding to a complaint by Paul Cronshaw, explained that the parking services management system provider had 'upgraded' the system which resulted in the 'unintended consequence' of stopping email renewal notices being sent out.
The PCNs were issued for a variety of different contraventions; 1,411 customers received an email reminder, the remaining 1,899 included some issued for a different zone or because they had cancelled their permit.
Mr Najsarek writes, ''In the event of any system failure in the future the service will ensure that we have a more robust communication strategy with members and residents.'
"If residents recieved [sic] a penalty charge notice as a result of not receiving an email reminder during this time and wish to challenge the notice they should do so in writing to us at Parkingrep@ealing.gov.uk and decisions will be made on the individual merits of each case.''
A significant number of people fined have already made an appeal although many more have paid the fine worried about the doubling of the cost if it is not settled promptly. In previous similar cases the Council have said that paying the fine is effectively an admission of guilt and therefore they do not refund PCNs retrospectively. Anyone who has not paid their fine yet is being urged to go through the appeal process.
A Freedom of Information (FoI) request to Ealing Council revealed that over 3,000 PCNs were issued to vehicles which previously had a resident permit in just over a year.
Ealing has an online system with no permit displayed on the vehicle. Many people had failed to renew - a significant said they were caught out because they hadn't received a reminder from the council.
Overall there were 3,310 PCNs issued in Ealing between September 2018 and October 2019 to vehicles that previously had a resident permit raising a total of £147,415.
Resident Barry Gleeson discovered the extent of the problem after making the FoI requests. He said, “When I was landed with a parking fine for failing to renew my parking permit I was raging with myself until I realised that I hadn't received a reminder and your article told me this had happened loads of people in Ealing - and the council were fairly nonchalant about it.”
What he learned from the request was that fines for failed renewals had gone up from £2,430 in 2018 to £147,000 the following year, an increase of 6,000% This rise has occurred since the new system was introduced.
Ealing resident Arthur Breens has been compiling a list of residents who have been fined as part of a broader complaint against the Council. If you would like to be included with this complaint you can email him on email@example.com.
28 November 2019