When councillor Craske was busy making up numbers in an attempt to justify
the near tripling of the price of Residents’ Parking Permits, one of the figures
he was emailing to anyone who complained
was that he was spending £11,000 a year
on IT to keep the records of the 3,000 permits issued each year. So he must be
recording all the relevant information, right? Err… No.
A Freedom of Information request (ref. 11/900) elicited the following information about parking permits…
• We do not hold the data to confirm how many permits are issued and refunded on a monthly basis.
• We do not hold any data to confirm how many permits were applied for online.
• We do not hold any data on how many permits the Library Service issue.
• We do not hold any data on how many permits were returned to Parking Services for a refund.
• We do not hold any data on how many permits were returned to the Libraries for a refund.
• We do not hold any data on how many visitor scratch card booklets have been issued, however, we can provide the number of applications made for scratch cards but not the number of scratch cards sold as a result of the applications.
If they don’t keep records is there not a possibility of fraud? Are there really no checks on how many permits and scratch cards are issued by libraries? Only public bodies can afford to be so unprofessional knowing that their incompetence will be paid for by a largely apathetic public ready to swallow the line that a single parking permit can cost £140 just for the printing and another eighty odd pounds for the staff to organise it and keep the records - if they do keep any records.
‘We do not hold the data’. The perfect excuse for councillor Craske to make up any figure he needs.