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Dispelling myths relating to Pay and Display parks

Media Release – August4, 2005

NZ Parking Association dispels urban myths relating to Pay and Display car parks.

The New Zealand Parking Association today dispelled urban myths relating to ‘pay and display’ car parks.

The association wanted to clear up and explain their views following television comments relating to examples of alleged infringement notices issued by a private car park operator.

Association chairman Colin Waite said the private notices bore no relation to the official notices issued by local authorities.

The parking association membership is made up of 45 local authorities and two airport companies that are authorised to carry out parking enforcement. Their authority to issue infringement notices is obtained both from the Transport Act 1962 and the Land Transport Act 1998. This allows infringement notices to be served on vehicles that are found to be parked in breach of either an act, regulation, land transport rule or local authority bylaw.

There are also members who are carpark operators and a growing number of suppliers to the parking industry however they are not authorised to carry out enforcement.

Pay and display machines can be found in a number of areas; on street, in parking buildings and in parking lots. Nelson Airport for example has a number of pay and display car parks within its area of responsibility while Auckland and Wellington cities have an ever increasing number of pay and display machines throughout their central business districts.

If people park their vehicles in a pay and display area and commit a breach of the rules relating to the use of that space or zone, then an infringement notice can be issued, Waite said today.

``Lately on the Fair Go television programme, there have been examples of alleged infringement notices issued by a private car park operator.

``These notices bear no relation to the official document required to be used by local authorities. The content and make up of an infringement notice is prescribed by statute, and in addition to the allegation of offence it must also display an abbreviated version of a `Summary of Rights’.This summary of rights explains the options you must follow if you believe you have a defence regarding the matter.

“Once the infringement notice is served, a strict time line for dealing with the matter is set in train.Ignore the process at your peril because within a minimum period of 56 days, if you haven’t paid the outstanding fee or communicated in writing to the issuing authority they can then forward it to the courts as an unpaid infringement offence.

“Extra costs are added at this point. You ignore the process at your own risk with little recourse to the courts if you do so. In this process, you have no right of appeal to the Disputes Tribunal.’’

Waite said it was no use arguing with the parking enforcement officer who is employed by a Local Authority. Parking Officers had no authority to stop the process.

He emphasised parking officers had the authority to issue infringement notices and they would continue to do so despite ill informed comment or criticism.


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