Civil Parking Enforcement (CPE)
Covid-19: As Welsh Government begin to ease lockdown restrictions many of our services are being phased back in. The 15th of June will see the return of our Civil Parking Enforcement officers to the streets. The officers will play a key role in ensuring that our roads and town centres are kept safe and unobstructed in order for people to return to work and undertake necessary journeys over the coming months.
The officers will focus initially on major town centres and the surrounding streets to ensure that there is no indiscriminate parking causing obstruction. This will fall inline with Welsh Government proposals to reopen non-essential retail stores.
Residents will not be charged for parking in council owned car parks, this will assist those key workers and those undertaking essential journeys to use the facilities, this will continue until further notice. Signs are in place in these facilities.
Residents who have parking permits which expired during lockdown measures will remain valid until further advice is issued regarding the renewal process.
The stay local rules remain in place and we ask residents to only travel when essential.
In February 2017, Gwent Police confirmed in writing to all five Gwent Local Authorities that they intended “to withdraw its officers and staff from activities that involve enforcing parking restrictions”.
Gwent is the only area of Wales where the local authorities have not taken on these powers and involves the transfer of powers from the police forces to local authorities.
As a result, Blaenau Gwent, Caerphilly, Monmouthshire, Newport and Torfaen Councils are all in the process of taking on Civil Parking Enforcement (CPE).
The advantages of introducing CPE in the Caerphilly county borough include control over where, when and how parking in the county borough is controlled, therefore enabling more flexible service provision where needed, improving compliance with parking restrictions and reducing congestion.
Your questions answered
What is Civil Parking Enforcement (CPE)?
CPE involves the transfer of powers from the Police to the local authority. Caerphilly County Borough Council are taking over parking enforcement duties from Gwent Police.
When will the change happen?
The Council will take responsibility for CPE from Monday 8 April 2019.
Who is responsible until that date?
Responsibility for parking enforcement will remain with Gwent Police until the changeover date.
Why make the change?
The transfer of powers will allow the Council to provide a coordinated and consistent approach to the enforcement of traffi¬c regulations and will help improve road safety, traffic flow and reduce obstructions.
Does CPE happen in other areas?
Yes - Gwent is currently the only police force area in Wales still responsible for parking enforcement and the transfer of powers to the Council will bring Caerphilly and all other local authorities in Gwent in line with the rest of the country.
Will we see new wardens patrolling the streets?
Yes – new Civil Enforcement Offi¬cers, employed by the Council, will undertake enforcement duties across the Caerphilly County Borough. Initially we will be deploying 10 officers as we roll out the scheme across the area, but this could change in the future.
What powers will they have?
The Civil Enforcement Officers will be able to enforce all parking related restrictions on the public highway by issuing a Penalty Charge Notice for any vehicle found to be parked unlawfully. These include:
- Prohibition of Stopping (i.e. Bus Stops, School Keep Clear markings, Zig-zags on the approaches to pedestrian crossings & rural clearway restrictions)
- No Waiting, No Waiting & No Loading.
- Parking Bays specifically for Limited Waiting, Loading, Taxis, Disabled Persons, Doctors, Police, Funeral Directors Vehicles and Permit holders.
They will also be able to issue Penalty Charge notices for:
- vehicles parked across dropped kerbs
- vehicles parked more than 50cm away from the kerb
- vehicles parked other than in accordance with the car park regulations in Council owned car parks
Will there be any restrictions that Civil Enforcement Officers can’t enforce?
Yes - Gwent Police will continue to enforce the following:
- All moving traffic offences (i.e. weight limits, prohibition of driving except for access, prohibition of right turn/U turn manoeuvres, No Entry, one-way, speed limits etc.) Cases of obstruction to moving traffic (e.g. yellow box junctions).
- Dangerous parking.
- Parking on pedestrian crossing zig-zags where the police can issue a fine resulting in points on your licence. (Please note, our CEOs can also issue PCNs for vehicles parked on pedestrian crossing zig-zags)
- Footway parking where no yellow lines are present.
- Driving over footways.
The Police will also carry out enforcement where security or other traffic policing issues are involved.
How much will the fine be?
The Penalty Charge Notice will be £70, reduced to £35 if paid within 14 days for the most serious contraventions (and is £50 and £25 respectively for lesser contraventions).
How do I pay a fine?
Details about how to pay will be on the back of the Penalty Charge Notice. If you wish to pay online please visit the South Wales Parking Group website.
What happens to the money?
Legislation states that any surplus money created through Civil Parking Enforcement will be reinvested in the highway and transportation network.
Is there an appeals process?
Yes – If you wish to challenge a Penalty Notice Charge, there will be a formal appeal procedure to follow. Details about this will be communicated at the time of the changeover (and will be available on the PCN itself and on this website)
Will the Civil Enforcement Officers target certain locations?
Civil Enforcement Officers will help to ensure safe, vibrant communities for residents and businesses, so resources will be targeted in key areas such as town centres, outside schools and other known hotspots, as well as residential areas.
Will Civil Enforcement Officers be given target numbers of PCNs to issue?
It is illegal to set targets for the issue of parking tickets, and the resulting enforcement would have a significant adverse impact on the Council’s reputation.
Are there any allowances for blue badge holders?
Blue badge holders are permitted to park in any of the following on-street locations for an unlimited period of time, unless signs say otherwise:
- Designated disabled parking bays
- Residents parking bays
- On-street limited waiting parking areas
Blue badge holders are permitted to park on single or double yellow lines (except where there is a ban on loading or unloading) where it would not cause an obstruction or danger to other road users for a period not exceeding three hours.
With respect to Off-street parking, it is current Caerphilly CBC policy to allow blue badge holders to park for 1 additional hour after expiry time shown on ticket in all Council pay & display car parks, but only if the blue badge is correctly displayed. (Blue badge holders should always look for signs in car parks indicating the local arrangements in force).
How do I request enforcement at a particular location or report an illegally parked vehicle?
How do I request changes to the existing parking restrictions?
Any changes to the existing restrictions would require the full traffic regulation order (TRO) procedure to be followed, which generally takes in the order of 6-9 months to complete due to the statutory processes involved. Our current list of new/requested traffic regulation orders is quite extensive and is therefore likely to take us a significant amount of time to deliver. However, following the commencement of Civil Parking Enforcement (CPE) in April 2019 it will be beneficial for us to understand what impact the increased level of enforcement has prior to progressing any new parking related traffic orders, and review the outstanding (and any new) requests with the benefit of that knowledge. The process for reviewing the impact of CPE and these outstanding and future requests in order to arrive at an approved TRO delivery programme has yet to be agreed. Officers will be engaging with Local Councillors in this discussion as part of agreeing the priorities for future TROs.