A BUNGLING council has admitted overcharging 12,000 motorists for using its parking spaces.
Southampton City Council is now trying to reimburse any drivers it had forced to pay nightly parking charges that were not authorized by law.
Fees vary, but as the lowest possible fee is 50p, the council has wrongly charged drivers at least £6,000.
The red-faced agency has now put up notices around the city’s parking lots to refund the money wrongly taken.
Most fees are said to be automatically refunded – but 2,500 drivers will have to apply for their refund.
Nightly parking fees in the city began on November 1st and around 12,000 were paid by November 12th, when Southampton City Council found the required new legal order had not been sealed.
Eamonn Keogh, Member of the Transport Cabinet, told the Daily Echo: “We obviously regret that this has happened.
“We have ensured that an investigation has been conducted to determine how this happened and have taken appropriate action to avoid a repeat of such errors in the future.
“We have also made efforts to ensure that, where possible, appropriate action has been taken to correct the error.”
Around 9,500 payment, display and transactions made via the PayByPhone app are currently being reimbursed.
The council said it could take around two weeks to complete the refund process.
A spokesman for Southampton City Council said: “The council formally apologizes to all affected customers for the error which was the result of oversight by officers.
“The Council has reviewed the processes to ensure this does not happen again.”
A Tory group called ‘Southampton Conservatives in Millbrook’ posted an image of a sign that had appeared on Facebook reading ‘It would have been better if parking fees hadn’t been charged at all!’ along with the hashtag #LabourFail.
https://www.the-sun.com/news/6885811/southampton-evening-parking-charges-council-refunding-drivers/ Thousands of drivers warn of excessive parking fees – are you affected?