You are on page 1of 16

abc Public report

8
Report to 21st January 2010
Cabinet Member (City Services)

Report of
Director of City Services and Development

Title
Civil Parking Enforcement - Annual Report 2008/09

1 Purpose of the Report

1.1 To seek approval for the Civil Parking Enforcement Annual Report 2008/09.

2 Recommendations

2.1 The Cabinet Member (City Services) is requested to approve the 2008/9 Civil Parking
Enforcement Annual Report to the Department for Transport which is included as appendix
1 to this Cabinet Member report.

3 Information/Background

3.1 Coventry City Council became a Decriminalised Parking Enforcement (DPE) Authority in
April 2005 under legislation contained in the Road Traffic Act 1991. At the commencement
of DPE the responsibility for on-street parking enforcement transferred to the City Council
from West Midlands Police.

3.2 In 2008, the relevant parts of the Road Traffic Act 1991 were replaced by Part 6 of the
Traffic Management Act 2004, which introduced new arrangements for 'Civil Parking
Enforcement' (CPE). In support of the introduction of CPE, the Department for Transport
issued statutory and operational guidance setting out how parking enforcement authorities
are expected to apply CPE.

3.3 The Department for Transport guidance includes a requirement for parking enforcement
authorities to issue an annual report detailing certain financial, statistical and other
information relating to parking enforcement performance. The information is required to be
placed in the public domain to ensure transparency and accountability.

3.4 The transparency given by regular and consistent reporting should help the public better
understand and accept CPE. Monitoring also provides the Council with management
information to evaluate performance and help to identify where it needs to improve its CPE
regime. It also provides a framework through which performance can be benchmarked with
other authorities.
4 Proposal and Other Option(s) to be Considered

4.1 This is the first annual report to be produced by Coventry City Council. Following Cabinet
Member approval, it is proposed to submit the report to the Secretary of State for Transport
and other key stakeholders, such as the Police. Copies will also be made available via the
Council's website and at local libraries. Thereafter, it is proposed to produce and make
available a report on an annual basis.

4.2 The production of an annual report is a requirement of both the Operational and Statutory
Guidance set out by the Department for Transport, therefore, not producing an annual
report is not a viable option.

5 Other specific implications

5.1
Implications No

(See below) Implications
Best Value  
Children and Young People  
Climate Change & Sustainable Development  
Comparable Benchmark Data  
Corporate Parenting  
Coventry Sustainable Community Strategy  
Crime and Disorder  
Equal Opportunities  
Finance  
Health and Safety  
Human Resources  
Human Rights Act  
Impact on Partner Organisations  
Information and Communications Technology  
Legal Implications  
Neighbourhood Management  
Property Implications  
Race Equality Scheme  
Risk Management  
Trade Union Consultation  
Voluntary Sector – The Coventry Compact  

2
6 Crime and Disorder

6.1 The civil enforcement of on-street parking restrictions encourage motorists not to break the
law by parking illegally. It also reduces Police resources needed to deal with these
offences, thereby enabling the Police to devote greater attention to tackling higher level
crime and disorder.

7 Financial Information

7.1 Under Section 55 of the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984, as amended by the Traffic
Management Act 2004, parking enforcement authorities are required to keep an account of
all on-street parking income and expenditure in relation to their functions as an
enforcement authority. An accurate financial summary of on-street parking income and
expenditure for the previous financial year is contained within the 2008/09 Annual Report.

8 Legal Implications

8.1 Section 55 of the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984 (as amended) requires each
enforcement authority to maintain a separate parking account. In addition, DfT guidance
issued under the Traffic Management Act 2004 requires each authority to prepare and
publish an annual civil parking enforcement report which must include financial information
from the parking account.

9 Impact on Partner Organisations

9.1 The civil enforcement of on-street parking restrictions frees up Police time, thereby
enabling them to devote more resources to other targeted priorities. It also has a positive
impact on other key stakeholder such as public transport operators by deterring and
reducing illegal parking at bus stops, thereby contributing towards public transport
accessibility and reliability.

10 Monitoring

10.1 Progress on achieving the aims and objectives set out in an annual report will be monitored
on a regular basis and reported to the Cabinet Member where appropriate. Performance
levels against the aims and objectives will be included in the annual reporting process.

11 Timescale and expected outcomes

11.1 Subject to approval, the annual report for 2008/09 will be published by the end of January
2010.

11.2 It is expected that annual reports for subsequent years will be produced in September of
each year. Therefore an annual report for 2009/10 will be produced in September 2010.

3
Yes No
Key Decision 
Scrutiny Consideration 
(if yes, which Scrutiny
meeting and date)
Council Consideration 
(if yes, date of Council
meeting)

List of background papers

Proper officer: Director of City Services and Development

Author: Telephone 024 76834243


Paul Bowman, Parking Services Manager, Highways Services
(Any enquiries should be directed to the above)

Other contributors:
Martin Yardley, City Services & Development Directorate
Colin Knight, City Services & Development Directorate 024 76 83 2322
Paul Boulton, City Services & Development Directorate 024 76 83 2030
Mark Smith, Finance & Legal Services, Telephone 024 7683 3037
Phil Helm, Finance & Legal Services, Telephone 024 7683 1301
Elaine Tierney, Finance & Legal Services, Telephone 024 7683 3726
Jasbir Bilen, Customer & Workforce Services, Telephone 024 76 83 1125
Julie Fairbrother, Corporate Communications, Telephone 024 76 83 2023
Liz Knight, Customer & Workforce Services, Telephone 024 76 83 3073

Papers open to Public Inspection


Description of paper
Report Location

4
Appendix 1

abc
Civil Parking Enforcement

Annual Report
2008 / 2009
Foreword
Thank you for taking the time to read this report which is the first annual report to be
produced by Coventry City Council in line with the requirements of Part 6 of the
Traffic Management Act 2004.
We at Coventry City Council want to let you know how we provide parking
enforcement and associated services (e.g. residents permit parking schemes and
traffic regulations) and how these services fit in with our other duties and
responsibilities for managing the road and traffic network.
One of our key priorities is to ensure that the network operates effectively and that
traffic runs smoothly wherever possible.
We do recognise that different groups (e.g. businesses, public services, public
transport, disabled persons, local residents and visitors etc.) have differing parking
needs and that it is important to find the right balance between these demands if our
aims are to be achieved fairly and consistently.
The enforcement of parking restrictions on the streets of Coventry is one way in
which the Council can seek to encourage considerate and legal parking.
Irresponsible parking can often lead to congestion, accidents and restrict access for
others to facilities and public services.
It is the motorist's responsibility to ensure that their vehicle is parked correctly and to
comply with the parking restrictions. It is a duty of the Council's Civil Enforcement
Officers (CEOs) to encourage compliance and to ensure that those drivers who do
not comply are accountable for their actions.
Many people make assumptions as to how the Council exercises its powers in regard
to parking enforcement. Hopefully, this report will serve to clarify some of those
issues. With that in mind and in order to dispel any misapprehension, parking
enforcement is not a "tool" for the Council to generate extra revenue and the CEOs
whose job it is to monitor vehicle parking (and issue parking tickets) are not set
targets. Similarly, they do not work on commission.
The income collected from penalty charge notices is used to fund the service and any
surplus money that may become available is reinvested into improving the traffic and
road network.
We hope that you find this report helpful and that it demonstrates that our objective is
to provide parking enforcement in Coventry in a fair, transparent and consistent
manner.
Information and guidance on parking enforcement within Coventry is also available
on the Council's website at www.coventry.gov.uk.
Further information relating to the enforcement of the Penalty Charge Notice process
and the associated appeals procedures can be found on the PATROL (i.e. Parking
and Traffic Regulations Outside of London) website at www.patrol-uk.info
You can send your comments and views in respect of any aspect of this report by
writing to: Coventry City Council, Parking Services Team, P.O Box 3943,
Coventry or by email to parking.enforcement@coventry.gov.uk

2
Contents Page

1. Executive Summary 4

2. Background 5

3. Performance 8
- Operational 8
- Financial 10

4. Glossary 12

3
1. Executive Summary

Part 6 of the Traffic Management Act 2004 which was implemented on 31st March
2008 places a requirement on Local Authorities to publish an annual report of their
Parking Enforcement operations. This is the first report to be produced by Coventry
City Council.

Coventry City Council has the responsibility for the enforcement, control and policy
for parking in the City. This responsibility includes the provision of on-street parking
(including residents parking schemes) in Coventry. Coventry City Council is not
directly responsible for the management of the public car parks within Coventry
however Council staff do undertake parking enforcement within public car parks.

The Council directly employs the Civil Enforcement Officers who carry out the
enforcement operation and also the administrative staff who deal with all aspects of
the payments, representations and appeals procedure.

During the course of 2008 / 2009 Coventry City Council's Parking Services Team
comprised of 1 Manager, 3 Senior Civil Enforcement Officers, 18 Civil Enforcement
Officers and 9 Administrative Officers.

This report provides financial and statistical information in regard to the service
together with details on the wider objectives and priorities for managing the road
network.

4
2. Background

Coventry became a Decriminalised Parking Enforcement (DPE) Authority in April


2005. At that point in time responsibility for parking enforcement transferred from the
West Midlands Police to Coventry City Council using powers in the Road Traffic Act
1991 (RTA 1991).

In March 2008, specific parts of the RTA 1991 were superseded by the introduction
of part 6 of the Traffic Management Act 2004. The new legislation widened the
scope of local authority parking enforcement and it aims to ensure greater
openness, consistency, fairness and professionalism within parking operations.

The implementation of part 6 of the TMA 2004 resulted in Coventry becoming a Civil
Parking Enforcement (CPE) authority. The expectations of CPE are that parking
enforcement operations are clearly aligned to the wider transport objectives and
strategies for the City, particularly in regard to:

 Improving traffic flow


 Reducing traffic congestion
 Improving road safety
 Improving the local environment
 Improving the quality and effectiveness of public services
 Improving the effectiveness of public transport.

Amongst other changes arising from the new legislation, there is an expectation on
the local authority to set and regularly appraise its parking policies and objectives as
these are an integral part of the local authorities transport plans and strategy.

A copy of the City Council's Parking Policies can be found on the City Council's
website at www.coventry.gov/transport

Additional information in respect of parking enforcement and the penalty charge


notice process can be found at: http://www.patrol-uk.info/downloads/ProcessMap.pdf

The implementation of part 6 of the Traffic Management Act 2008 in March 2008 also
placed a requirement on local authorities to publish an annual report of their Parking
Enforcement operations. This is the first report to be produced by Coventry City
Council in line with this requirement.

Coventry City Council is responsible for parking enforcement, control and policy in
Coventry. This responsibility includes the provision of on-street parking facilities,
including residents parking schemes. Within Coventry there are currently 7 residents
parking schemes where parking is restricted to the local residents living within the
area and whose vehicles must display a valid parking permit. The largest of these
schemes is the Ricoh Arena Scheme which operates during football match days and
event days at the stadium) but it excludes responsibility and management for off-
street parking facilities (i.e. public car parks - car parks throughout Coventry are not

5
managed by the Council's Parking Services Team and as such this report does not
address issues relating to car parks).

The Council seeks to discourage indiscriminate and inconsiderate parking by


promoting legal parking that is compliant with the traffic regulations and Coventry's
parking policies.

Coventry City Council has chosen to retain its Parking Services functions in-house.
That it to say, that services are delivered by staff employed directly by the council.

The Parking Services Team comprises of an in-house Parking Enforcement function


coupled with a Notice Processing function. The two elements of the team provide the
following services:

 A civil parking enforcement service throughout the city including the


enforcement on street and off-street parking restrictions.

 The Civil Enforcement Officers (CEOs) also report abandoned vehicles,


report untaxed vehicles to the DVLA, check and inspect parking equipment,
check and report defective lines and signs, assist with the police in regard to
potential criminal parking activities, assist with initiatives to tackle blue badge
misuse and abuse.

 The day-to-day management of the penalty charge notice payment system.

 Dealing with informal and formal representations.

 Preparing and presenting cases to the independent adjudication service.

 Instructing bailiffs to recover debts

 Administering residents parking schemes and the renewal of permits. (The


seven residents permit schemes in operation throughout Coventry incorporate
approximately 18,000 properties).

 Issuing waiver and dispensation certificates to contractor's works vehicles

The primary objective of the CPE is to improve the management of the road network
as a result of enforcement of illegal parking and promoting compliance with parking
restrictions.

The Enforcement Team is responsible for the monitoring of parking in accordance


with the parking regulations and Traffic Regulation Orders (TROs), and for issuing
penalty charge notices (PCNs) to vehicles that appear to be parked in contravention
of the parking restrictions.

During 2008 / 2009 the Parking Services staff structure comprised on average of 27
employees, 18 of whom were engaged in the enforcement function and 9 of whom
were engaged on management / or notice processing activities.

6
The enforcement team is organised in such a manner that enforcement operations
can be undertaken during Monday to Sunday throughout the year (i.e. 24 / 7). CEOs
utilise hand held computers together with other work equipment (e.g. digital cameras)
to record and monitor parking infringements, and where necessary to issue PCNs.

The hand held computers are linked to the back office systems so that the
administration / notice processing team can manage the PCN through its lifecycle
and the payment recovery process.

As a result of the implementation of the TMA 2004 during March 2008, a two tier
(differential charging) system of charging was introduced. As such parking
contraventions were categorised as either higher or lower level contraventions. At
this time Coventry City Council chose to set its penalty charges at £70 for the high
level contravention and £50 for the low level contravention.

There are numerous parking restrictions in place across Coventry and there are
approximately 60 different types of parking contraventions that are enforceable by
CEOs. A full list of the different levels of parking offences can be found on the
Council's website at www.coventry.gov/transport

Here are some examples of parking restrictions:

 Parking on double yellow lines


 Stopping on yellow zigzag lines outside of schools
 Parking for longer than permitted in a limited waiting area
 Parking in a residents parking zone without displaying a valid permit
 Parking in a taxi rank or at a bus stop
 Stopping where prohibited (e.g. on a red route)

It is important that motorists are familiar with the various types of parking restrictions,
including the road markings and signs, as this will result in a greater level of
compliance and an increased understanding and awareness of the regulations.
Further information about the signs and road markings can be found at
www.direct.gov.uk/en/TravelAndTransport/Highwaycode/Signsandmarkings

Further information in regard to the Penalty Charge Notice process can also be found
on Coventry City Council's website at www.coventry.gov/transport

7
3. Performance

Operational Performance
The Parking Services Team was faced with numerous challenges during the year
2008/9. This type of situation will inevitably continue to be the case during the years
ahead as the Local Authority strives to improve the efficiency and cost effectiveness
of the services provided to the citizens of Coventry.

Ultimately, Parking Services overcame many of its challenges and the following is a
list of some of the key achievements that were realised during the year:

 The successful implementation of the requirements of part 6 of the Traffic


Management Act 2004 and Civil Parking Enforcement. This necessitated
significant changes to computer systems, stationery, uniforms and ways of
working.

 A Service Improvement Plan was developed and adopted. This plan identified
areas for improvement within the service that would result in the function
operating more effectively.

 A fundamental service review into the parking enforcement function


commenced during September 2008.

 A robust performance management framework has been implemented that


has resulted in an improvement in performance and a reduction in the level of
staff absenteeism.

 The financial objectives for the service were achieved.

 TROs were amended to enable the enforcement of dangerous and


inconsiderate parking outside of schools in order to improve road safety.

 Coventry City Council was awarded Blue Badge Joint Centre of Excellence
status together with Birmingham City Council. An action plan of improvements
to tackle the abuse and misuse of blue badges has since been developed and
implemented.

 Coventry City Council is committed to ensuring that its CEOs and Notice
Processing staff are suitably skilled and qualified to undertake their duties to a
high standard. On average each employee received 3 days training during the
year.

The primary objective of parking enforcement is to contribute to the wider local


transport plans. Essentially it is our aim to improve traffic flow, improve road safety,
reduce congestion on the road network, and improve the effectiveness of public
transport and services.

8
The following is a list of some of the key objectives and initiatives that are planned for
2009 / 2010 that will help to achieve our aims and improve our services:

 Complete the fundamental review of the service and to implement the


recommendations arising from the review.

 Produce the first annual report to the Cabinet Member (City Services) and for
the Department for Transport in line with the requirements of the TMA 2004.

 Forge closer links with the Traffic and Network Management function in order
to achieve improved ways of working and the more expeditious movement of
traffic across the road network.

 Update the parking policy and publish this on the Council's website.

 Achieve the performance and financial objectives for the service.

 Continue to improve the income recovery arrangements.

 Improve the quality of workmanship and reduce the level of cancellations as a


result of Civil Enforcement Officer (CEO) error.

 Benchmark the performance of the service against other local authorities in


the region.

 Implement CCTV bus lane enforcement in order to improve the effectiveness


and efficiency of public transport.

 Introduce processes to enable PCNs to be served by post where the vehicle


is driven away before service, where the CEO has been forcibly prevented
from serving the PCN to the vehicle or through evidence from an approved
camera device.

 Minimise the misuse and abuse of Blue Badges by carrying out enforcement
initiatives in conjunction with partner organisations.

 Work with other local authorities to ensure greater consistency in regard to


parking enforcement within the West Midlands region.

9
Financial Performance
It is a requirement of the TMA 2004 that specific financial and statistical data in
relation to the Parking Enforcement operation is included within this Annual Report.
With that in mind, the following information is provided:

Income and Expenditure Account

On-street Account
2008 / 09
Income
£
Penalty Charge Notices 1,064,031
Total Income 1,064,031

Expenditure 2008/ 09
£
Employee Costs 763,806
Supplies & Services 141,680
Transport Costs 13,743
Premises Costs 52,729
Training 2,933
Council Internal Overheads 17,093
DVLA 7,697
Traffic Penalty Tribunal 12,806
Traffic Enforcement Centre 24,000
Total Expenditure 1,036,487
Surplus 27,544

Action taken with respect to Surplus/Deficit on the Parking Account

The surplus has gone towards the reimbursement of the service establishment costs.

10
Statistical Data

PCNs Issued On-street


2008/09

No. Lower level Issued 7,874


No. Higher level Issued 23,097
Total number of PCNs paid 22,083
No. of PCNs paid at discount 18,303
No. of PCNs paid at face value 3,780
No. of PCNs paid at Charge Certificate 519
No. of PCNs where a representation was made 6,613
No. of PCNs cancelled as a result of representation
445
(mitigation)
No. of PCNs cancelled for other reasons 1,117
No. of representations that are rejected 2,211
No. of vehicles immobilised 0
No. of vehicles removed 0

Appeals and Adjudication


2008/09
No. of Appeals Received 424
Ratio of appeals to PCNs issued 1:73
Appeals not contested 302
Appeals allowed by Adjudicator 122
Appeals refused by Adjudicator 28
Appeals awaiting a decision 5

11
4. Glossary of Terms

Annual Report This is the abbreviated name for this document, the Annual
Parking Enforcement Report 2008 / 2009

CEO Civil Enforcement Officer

CPE Civil parking enforcement

DPE Decriminalised Parking Enforcement

DfT Department for Transport

DVLA Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency

NTO Notice to Owner

PAPO Parking Appeals and Processing Officer – the job title given to
Notice Processing and administration staff

PCN Penalty Charge Notice

TMA Traffic Management Act 2004

RTA Road Traffic Act 1991

TRO Traffic Regulation Order - is a legal order, which allows the


Highways Authority to regulate the speed, movement and
parking of vehicles and regulate pedestrian movement, which
are enforceable by law.

12