10 May 2016

Capita exceed their brief

This is the question that NSL (who issue PCN for Barnet Council and provide processing services) sent to Capita who provide customer support activities which include fielding calls about parking permits (Mr Mustard has lost track of who actually processes permits nowadays).

So all that NSL wanted to know was whether the resident was told they had a permit which was valid on 15 December 15 or not.

Here is the response:

So this response doesn't set out what occurred in the conversation of 19 November which is the crux of the matter and concludes by expressing an opinion 'this ticket would therefore stand' and the decision about formal representations in response to a PCN isn't part of the job of a contractor, not even NSL who actually process PCN, so definitely not Capita's role. Any decision about representations being accepted or not must be take by a council officer (contractors can do the spadework, present facts and write decision letters under instruction, they cannot make decisions and should not therefore try to influence a decision).

If you phone up about a PCN please tape the call. If a call centre operator tells you that your challenge will fail and you should pay your PCN, please send a copy of the call to Mr Mustard and he will make the appropriate complaint. It is your statutory right to challenge any PCN you receive.

One final point is why evidence being submitted to the tribunal is being redacted (pretty pointless when Mr Mustard knows who the people are) as you can't give anonymous evidence. If the adjudicator does not pick this up Mr Mustard will be sure to mention it.

Yours frugally

Mr Mustard

1 comment:

  1. I've nearly read Owen Hatherley's Book "Austerity Nostalgia".
    He mentions How a Tom Harrisson Mass Observation Report on the blitz mentioned how "'instructions to the Assistance Board for instance, "began to be coloured with significant references to the need for courteous and sympathetic behaviour". They had not been there before.'
    The excerpts you quote from Capita do not appear to show courtesy or sympathy for the citizens paying for this "service" who are caught in its web. Not even a hint that some might be "deserving" as well as undeserving "customers".

    Even more worrying is my suspicion that perhaps the impact of your own efforts at making the system fairer, better informed, and more sensitive may be limited to altering the behaviour of particular staff who were prepared to learn. But if and when these decent fair-minded people leave "Broken Barnet" - as Mrs Angry calls it - the old pattern reasserts itself.

    Are you Sisyphus? Or is there another way? An alternative to what you seem to be describing in Barnet is tax farming in the original sense.


I now moderate comments in the light of the Delfi case. Due to the current high incidence of spam I have had to turn word verification on.