Solihull Council was highlighted recently for raising £549,286 from Parking Penalties last year. (Source Taxpayers' Alliance Survey).This is expected to increase substantially in the current year as loopholes are being tightened up and a plethora of New Residential Parking Restrictions are introduced.
At his Cabinet Decision Session on 10th December Councillor Ted Richards Cabinet Member for Transport and Highways agreed to an order allowing Civil Parking Enforcement to apply to all “School Keep Clear” carriageway markings at a 100 locations in Solihull. This will allow the Private Sector Wardens to Issue £60 Parking Tickets to Mums dropping children off and picking up mainly at Primary Schools.
At present the school markings are only advisory and in the past the Police had discretion to issue Penalty Tickets to drivers considered to be causing an obstruction a system that has worked well over the years.
Under the New Civil Enforcement Regulations there will be No Discretion and the Blue Coated Wardens will appear like Magic on their little L Plated Scooters with a wad of Penalty Charge Notices to any mother contravening the restrictions.
We all know the School Run causes congestion especially around our Junior & Infant Schools but this congestion in the main restricts traffic speed to a crawl and on balance makes the area of school gates hectic but pretty safe. The real hazard this legislation introduces is not to children but to their mums from officious wardens and their books of Parking Enforcement Penalty Notices which the Road Traffic Act 1991 effectively gave Local Authorities a Licence to Print Money. The cost of this change is £25,000 but this will no doubt soon be recouped when the system becomes operational.
Solihull Ratepayers will be using every opportunity to warn its members and local residents of the activities of Solihull’s small army of Traffic Wardens and encouraging anyone who feels they have been unfairly issued with a parking ticket that it’s worth objecting as 10% of tickets are cancelled.