Tuesday, 20 August 2013

We won, but what now?


In light of the High Court ruling that Barnet Council's 2011 CPZ price increases were unlawful, the Council has said it will reimburse residents who have been overcharged.

However, the Council will not be automatically refunding residents who have been overcharged. Residents will need to submit a claim to the Council.

What can be reclaimed?

Only the additional cost to the price of residents's parking permits and visitor vouchers can be reclaimed. So, if you purchased 10 visitor vouchers at £4 each, you can claim £30 since you should have been charged £1 each or £10.

If you have paid £100 for your parking permit in 2011 and in 2012, then you can claim £120 since you should have been charged only £40 in each of 2011 and 2012.

How do I claim? 

You should fill out an e-form on Barnet Council’s website, providing details of their name, telephone number, address, permit ID, if they have it, and car registration number.
Alternatively, they can email the council at CPZParkingRefunds@barnet.gov.uk.
Or write to Parking Team, CPZ Parking Refunds, London Borough of Barnet, Building 4, North London Business Park, Oakleigh Road South, London N11 1NP.    

This link will take you to the Council's website where you can access the e-form. http://www.barnet.gov.uk/news/article/345/statement_on_cpz_legal_challenge

Money Donated to Barnet CPZ Action

Barnet Council have been ordered to pay David Attfield's legal costs which we hope will enable us to return larger donations (£20 or more) at least in part. However, the process of assessing and agreeing how much the Council should pay can take weeks or even months, so please be patient.

It is unlikely that all of the legal costs will be recovered from Barnet as there may be technical reasons why the council will argue that they shouldn't have to pay some elements of the legal costs incurred. Also, we incurred significant costs running our campaign, in particular for printing leaflets. Barnet will not be paying these.  All this means unfortunately that, for the moment, we do not know how much of the donated money we will be able to return.

We will of course keep you updated.

Friday, 2 August 2013

Council accepts Court ruling: CPZ charges revert to pre-increase levels

The Leader of Barnet Council, Richard Cornelius, confirmed today that the Council will not appeal against last week's High Court ruling which found the Council's 2011 CPZ price increases to be unlawful.  He also apologised for the fact that the CPZ increases were implemented without going through the proper process. You can read the council's statement here: http://www.barnet.gov.uk/news/article/345/statement_on_cpz_legal_challenge

This is great news for everyone who has supported our campaign and puts an end to the legal uncertainty following last week's High Court victory.  It means that:

  • Barnet's CPZ charges will revert back to their pre-increase levels (£40 for a permit and £1 for a visitor voucher)
  • Residents will be able to claim refunds of the amount that they have been overcharged for permits and visitor vouchers. Details of how to do this are set out in the council's  statement: http://www.barnet.gov.uk/news/article/345/statement_on_cpz_legal_challenge
  • Realistically, before long, the Council will want to introduce new price increases since the charges have now reverted back to what they were in 2006.  But we trust the council to take heed of the High Court judgment and that residents will not face the prospect of a £4 charge for a visit that may last only 30 minutes. 
  • The Council will pay David Attfield's legal costs, enabling donated money to be returned at least in part. This will take time, so please bear with us. 
Our fight has drawn to a successful conclusion.  In large part this is due to the support and encouragement of the hundreds of people who have backed our campaign.  Indeed, without the financial backing we received, it simply would not have been possible to pursue a legal action against the Council.  Thank you to everyone who has helped bring this about.

Whilst we are celebrating our success, we are also mindful that the Council has a large logistical exercise to undertake and that there will be financial consequences for the Council.  We would  encourage people to be patient in their applying for refunds - we are sure the Council will be doing all they can to deal with these efficiently.  We also sincerely hope that the Council's contingency planning means that it can deal with this set back without an impact on services.  But the truth is that the Council is the author of its misfortune and had opportunities along the way to resolve this issue at considerably less inconvenience and cost to it.