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Howard and Byrne Solicitors, York - Criminal Defence Specialists

Total Costs for Lendal Bridge & Coppergate Restrictions Could Hit £2.8 Million

Lendal Bridge Sign

6:05am 4th April 2014

The total cost of York's Lendal Bridge and Coppergate restrictions could hit £2.8 million, if York Council is forced to issue a full refund.

Minster FM has estimated the total cost for setting up, running and then refunding fines issued from the Lendal Bridge and Coppergate cameras, based on the most recent information we have to hand.

It's after a government appointed judge ruled the council could not use it's cameras to issue fines, throwing the legality of the fining system into doubt. This week, two separate traffic lawyers have told Minster FM that they believe that the adjudicator's decision means that anyone who appeals their fine should get their money back. But York Council is currently seeking independent legal advice on the matter and could dispute this.

If York Council had to give a full refund to all those who have been fined so far, we believe the total bill for the restrictions would be £2.8 million with £2.5 million coming from the council directly and the rest coming from a government grant given to the council known as the Better Bus Area Fund (BBAF).

If only those who have appealed so far got their money back we believe the total bill for the restrictions would be £1.2 million, with £976,000 coming from the council and the rest coming from the BBAF.

York Council has told Minster FM the cameras are still on and issuing fines and is urging motorists to obey the restrictions. The council's estimates before the adjudicator's decision forecast that the council would make a £700,000 surplus.

HOW WE CALCULATED OUR ESTIMATES

The cost of setting up and operating the Lendal Bridge closure was made publicly available by the council before the decision was made. York Council confirmed that the total cost of enforcing the Coppergate restrictions was £75,000 in an e-mail to us in July 2013.

The figures for the total number of people fined comes from York Council's final six month report compiled as part of the evidence gathering for the Lendal Bridge trial. In February, the council confirmed to us in an e-mail that 77.1% of those fined were paying the reduced rate of £30 for early payment, we have used that ratio for the divide between £30 and £60 fine payments.

The figures for the total number of people who have appealed their fines come from a written answer given to opposition Liberal Democrat councillor Ann Reid to a question put to Labour's Dave Merrett, the councillor responsible for transport, at the council's last meeting on 27th March.

OUR ESTIMATES FOR THE TOTAL COSTS OF THE LENDAL BRIDGE & COPPERGATE RESTRICTIONS

LENDAL BRIDGE - COSTS  Better Bus Area Fund Government Grant  York Council Funding
Designing and Implementation £150,000 £20,000
Project Management £50,000  
Network Operating Staff   £40,000
Monitoring   £20,000
Signing and orders   £10,000
Cameras   £40,000
Consultation   £10,000
Processing costs/appeals/other   £260,000
  SUB -TOTAL £600,000
     
LENDAL BRIDGE - APPEALS ONLY REFUND   
Estimate 2670 x £60 fines   £160,200
Estimate 8988 x £30 fines   £269,640
  SUB - TOTAL £429,840
     
LENDAL BRIDGE - FULL REFUND    
Estimate 10,921 x £60 fines   £655,260
Estimate 36,770 x £30 fines   £1,103,100
  SUB -TOTAL £1,758,360
     
COPPERGATE - COSTS    
Total confirmed cost of Coppergate set up £75,000  
  SUB - TOTAL £75,000
     
COPPERGATE - APPEALS ONLY REFUND  
Estimate 913 x £60 fines   £54,780
Estimate 3075 x £30 fines   £92,250
  SUB - TOTAL £147,030
     
COPPERGATE - FULL REFUND    
Estimate 2284 x £60 fines   £137,040
Estimate 7691 x £30 fines   £230,730
  SUB - TOTAL £367,770
     
TOTAL ESTIMATED COSTS (INCL. APPEAL ONLY REFUNDS) £1,251,870
TOTAL ESTIMATED COSTS (INCL. FULL REFUNDS) £2,801,130
     
YORK COUNCIL TOTAL ESTIMATED COSTS (INCL. APPEAL ONLY REFUNDS) £976,870
YORK COUNCIL TOTAL ESTIMATED COSTS (INCL. FULL REFUNDS) £2,526,130
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