30 July 2012

Now just remind me...

those were the days
FOI question ( 27 January 2012 )

From 1 January 2011 please advise the date on which the reminders were posted to residents in possession of a permit allowing them to park within the CPZ for each month since then up to February 2012 (which is presumably the most recent month for which reminders were issued).

Please make clear if there were any months in which reminders were not sent and give the reason/s.

Are the reminders posted first class or second?

Response ( 24 July 2012 - only 6 months! )

From January 2011 to March 2012 Permit reminder letters were being issued approximately 1 month before the expiry of the resident permit. In April 2012 we became aware that reminder letters had not been issued. This was raised with members of the management team in the Customer Service Organisation and the facility was switched on towards the middle of May 2012.

I cannot provide you with precise dates when reminder letters were issued because these are system generated letters based upon the account information. To clarify, there are no fixed dates when reminder letters are printed each month. It is dependent upon the date when the renewal period starts. The renewal period starts 1 month before the expiry of the permit. This varies on a case by case basis.

Reminders are posted second class.

Mr Mustard was aware that the system went wrong in April 2012 because that is when his own permit was due for renewal and fortunately he had his own record and applied in time.

If your permit was due for renewal between the end of March and mid-May 2012 and you received a parking ticket and paid it, this would be a good time to ask for your money back as your failure to renew was not your fault. Quite why it took from April to mid May to put right such a simple reminder system is indicative of the administrative complexity and lack of control caused by separating the service from customer service.

If you have failed to receive a reminder at any other time, and the council admit that they have no idea when they have sent out reminders, which is a truly shocking lack of record keeping, then you can ask Mr Mustard for a copy of his FOI response in support of your argument that you were not reminded.

Yours frugally

Mr Mustard

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