AS A Labour member, it is disappointing how the saga of Lendal Bridge trial drags on. While I maintain that the policy direction was correct, its shambolic implementation resulted in its abandonment.
Once that was decided, it should have been manifest that all fines should be refunded irrespective of the ‘legal’ position. By agreeing to refund fined motorists as a goodwill gesture, the council has in effect admitted it was wrong and should have instigated an immediate automatic refund to all those affected.
There are three reasons for that.
Firstly, there seems the pragmatic commercial reason that the cost of ad hoc ‘goodwill’ refunds is likely to cost much more to administer than an automatic refund.
Secondly, there is the disruption to other council services – and therefore residents – while phone lines and staff are busy dealing with inquiries relating to the trial. At a time of huge council cuts, diverting staff away from valuable frontline work is not acceptable.
Finally, it will be the motorists that are most articulate who get refunded because they know how to go about obtaining a refund while those who are less so are left out of pocket. This form of administrative gate-keeping reflects poorly on Labour .
Richard Bridge, Holgate Road, York.