Council can keep on issuing parking tickets

HANK SCHOUTEN
Last updated 13:57 08/07/2013
parking woes
CHRIS SKELTON/ Fairfax NZ

JUST THE TICKET: Al O’Connor says a parking bylaw loophole means Hutt City Council has no right to give people tickets for overstaying in time restricted parks.

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Hutt City Council says it has legal advice that it can continue to issue tickets for people over parking in time restricted areas, but it will looking at passing a bylaw if it needs to.

The council was responding to claims by legal researcher Al O'Connor that thousands of tickets issued by council parking wardens were invalid and that fines may have to be refunded.

O'Connor said Land Transport regulations do not allow councils to issue tickets unless people are in breach of parking bylaws and Hutt City Council bylaws don't cover time-restricted parking areas.

Council chief executive Tony Stallinger said concerns raised about the validity of the council's parking tickets were unfounded."The council has had legal advice and under central government legislation, it has been able to, and can continue to issue parking fines in the time restricted areas. 

''Council will be considering amending the current bylaw to remove any ambiguity in legislation.''

People issued with tickets must continue to pay their fines and it was business as usual for the council.

Lower Hutt was busy and parking restrictions were important to people needing access to services and business owners who relied on public being able to access their services, said Mr Stallinger.

However, O'Connor said council should not be issuing more tickets as it was acting unlawfully.

''They are ticketing people for parking in breach of a bylaw when there's no bylaw that deals with it. It's a black and white problem.''

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