Penalty amnesty during parking handover

PUBLISHED: 12:00 05 June 2012 | UPDATED: 15:22 07 June 2012

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A PARKING penalty amnesty has been announced by Somerset County Council to help drivers in the switchover to civil parking enforcement across the area.

The authority announced last week that it will take on responsibility for issuing penalties to drivers flouting double yellow lines and loading bays from June 11– currently carried out by Avon and Somerset Constabulary.

Somerset County Council will also enforce motorists abusing bus lanes and some off-street car parks.

Now the council has announced that enforcement officers will not give out fines during the first week of the new system.

Instead, they will issue advice slips to vehicles parked incorrectly.

From June 18, the amnesty period will end and motorists will be handed penalties of between £50-70.

Currently, police tickets for parking on double yellow lines are just £30.

The amnesty will apply to areas such as Burnham, Cheddar and Highbridge.

Patrick Flaherty, group director of operations at the council, said: “We have a week-long amnesty to allow everyone to get used to the new system which has worked with great success there.

“Countywide parking enforcement will bring a consistent approach across Somerset.

“The council has taken on these parking responsibilities to keep our roads clear with the aim of helping reduce traffic congestion and improving town centre trade.

“Our message is clear, do not break parking rules. From the following Monday morning, the advice slips our officers will be handing out in the first week will be replaced with penalty notices for anyone who does not abide by the rules.”

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