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20 months of parking tickets refunded

Invercargill City Council will refund almost two years of incorrectly issued parking fines after acknowledging a bylaw was not properly enforced.

Tickets eligible for cancellation and refund were issued between July 1, 2022 and February 29 of this year.

The council said any fines for “failing to activate the meter in a metered space” during that time will be refunded.

A council spokesperson told 1News that 12,272 tickets were incorrectly issued in that time.

“Each infringement notice costs $40, which means the total amount to be refunded is $490,880.”

In a statement, chief executive Michael Day said: “As a council, it is important that we take responsibility when an error occurs and ensure we remedy the situation as quickly as possible.

“In this case, we will refund and cancel a number of parking violation notices that have been charged incorrectly.”

The tickets were incorrectly issued under the city’s Parking Control Regulation.

The issue was the subject of a ruling by Invercargill District Court, which found that parking meters did not clearly indicate that people using a park for 30 minutes or less (which meant parking was free) still needed to enter their license plate into the parking meter and activate it. he.

Day said the council had an “obligation to the community” to ensure the bylaw was accurate and correctly applied.

“We have already started the process of identifying those affected and will continue to work with the community as we progress through this. If you think you have been affected, please visit the Council’s website for more information.”

All outstanding and unpaid bills were automatically cancelled.

But anyone who has already paid a fine during this period must request a refund online.

“The council is currently proposing amendments to the Parking Control Bylaw which will be open for consultation from May 29 to June 28, 2024,” the council said, adding that “the proposed changes include making the bylaw easier to understand”.

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