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Blue Badge Ticket Warning

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Published by the Pirate FM News Team at 7:02am 27th September 2014.

There is a warning that disabled drivers could wrongly be slapped with tickets in Cornwall.

It is because tax discs are being phased out - making it impossible for patrols to tell who is allowed to park free.

Advice from Cornwall Council:

Are you a Blue Badge holder who does not pay road tax? Is your tax disc due to run out before 1 October when the tax disc system is being abolished by the Government? If so please contact the Council urgently to give us your vehicle registration details so we can continue to ensure that you receive your entitlement to free parking in Cornwall Council run car parks.  

If your tax disc is due to run out later in the year or early in 2015 please contact us about two weeks before it expires to give us your vehicle details.

Please remember that only Blue Badge holders who pay no road tax are entitled to free parking in Cornwall Council run car parks. All other Blue Badge holders must pay to park, but are entitled to one hour's additional parking free.

Earlier this year the Government announced changes to the vehicle taxation system which means there will no longer be a legal requirement for any vehicle to display a tax disc.  Although the new legislation comes into force on 1 October, the Government has only recently advised that local authorities must make their own arrangements.

The Council is currently considering its new policy and, after consultation, will introduce the policy in April 2015. In the meantime the arrangements outlined above will apply.

This means that up to two weeks before their tax disc expires, Blue Badge nil tax disc holders should contact the Council's Parking Service to give details of their vehicle's make and model and their registration number.  This can be done either by emailing parkingservices@cornwall.gov.uk or by post to Parking Services, PO Box 664, TR1 9DH.

The Council's Parking Enforcement Officers will then be able to recognise eligible vehicles using their hand held computers. Anyone who is entitled to free parking and finds themselves being issued with a penalty charge notice should follow the instructions on the reverse of the Penalty Charge Notice providing the PCN number and explaining that they do not pay road tax.  The parking service will then verify this and cancel any undeserved charges.

Bert Biscoe, the Council's Cabinet Member for Transport and Waste, said: "The Council has had to act quickly to get an interim scheme in place.

"Many Members have been contacted by concerned residents about this issue and I am glad to be able to announce details of the interim scheme today.

"Please don't forget to continue to display your nil tax disc while it is valid or to contact the parking service a fortnight before it is due to run out to give us your vehicle details so they can be registered. I am, however, anxious to make sure that our staff are not inundated, hence the "phased" approach. "

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