‘Repay Lendal Bridge fines, stop Castlegate closure’ say Lib Dems

20 Nov 2014 @ 10.32 am
| News, Politics
Lendal Bridge: the source of much controversy. Photograph: Richard McDougall

York Liberal Democrats are making a fresh call for all Lendal Bridge fines to be repaid following the resignation of council leader James Alexander.

Lib Dem Group Leader Cllr Keith Aspden will move a motion at next month’s Full Council meeting (December 11) calling for all fined motorists to be automatically refunded.

He will be seeking support from other councillors to back the move in the coming days.

Cllr Aspden said the refunds need to be part of a wider rethink of council policies following the resignation of the Labour council leader.

“Whoever leads the council between now and May it is clear that we need to see a wholesale change of policies including repaying all Lendal Bridge fines and halting plans to close Castlegate and Yearsley Pool.

“The Lendal Bridge trial was the most high profile failure of James Alexander’s term in office. Only by repaying all the fines can we start to repair the deep reputational damage the trial has done to York.

“The Government’s Traffic Adjudicator said that the council had ‘no power’ to issue the fines in the way it did.

“The council is no longer challenging this decision and therefore there can be no justification for keeping any of the money collected.”

“The case for paying back all the fines has been strengthened by the secret report unearthed by my colleague Cllr Andrew Waller. This showed that the trial was not a legitimate transport project managed by council officers.

“It was a shambles mismanaged by the Labour Cabinet Member in which innocent motorists were caught out.

“The fine money is sitting in reserves, the council has the names and addresses of those fined and therefore it should put in place a system to automatically repay them. Other councils such as Colchester who got themselves into similar problems have done this. York should now belatedly follow suit.”