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Moving traffic offences – a new way to clobber motorists

Terry Hudson Whtistable Kent CT5
21 August 2020

I read in LTT with anger and dismay (not unexpected) that the Government is to allow local highway authorities in England to generate and keep monies from moving traffic offences (‘Traffic management powers shake-up’ LTT 07 Aug).

You do not need a crystal ball to see the outcome of such a move, for we have London (where this system has been the norm for many years) to illustrate what is going to happen. 

Citizens who under normal circumstances would not commit any crime are going to be pursued and criminalised to top-up council budgets. 

We will be getting to the stage where, if you discount rates and rents, most council income will be from motoring-related charges/fines. Councils all over England have used their existing powers to use parking as a local tax, despite this being illegal.

But who is going to stop them? Certainly not any of the current political parties, as they all agree on making driving as unpleasant and costly as possible. Britain’s political class totally ignore the wishes of the vast majority of the public who see the car as essential to meet their needs and lifestyles. That’s especially true for those who do not live in major cities, who are totally ignored.

With councils about to be granted these powers, we can expect to see a cash-grab ‘gold rush’ descend on Britain’s drivers, with fines handed out like confetti for the slightest infringement of some totally unnecessary local restriction, which has only been introduced to generate the council revenue.

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