Road User Charging (Enforcement and Adjudication) (London) Regulations 2001 and Road User Charging (Charges and Penalty Charges) (London) Regulations 2001

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Mr. Foster: Keep going.

Mr. Chope: I shall not keep going any longer, but I shall give way to the Minister so that he can come up with an answer. It is very serious if his officials have a different view from us.

Mr. Spellar: I do not wish to prolong the debate with an endless discussion on the details of the scheme. However, section 4(1) of the Mayor's proposals says that the charge is for

    ''each charging day on which a relevant vehicle is used or, except as provided by paragraph (2)''-

which is about residents' permits-

    ''kept on one or more designated roads at any time during charging hours.''

So it is not just when a vehicle used, but when it is kept on one or more designated roads. That relates to outsiders; the exemption is for residential permits.

Mr. Chope: In the light of that, perhaps the Liberal Democrats will withdraw their support for the proposal. If the Minister's interpretation is correct, only people who park off-road, in underground car parks for example, will be exempt from the charges. In order to ensure that the penalties are imposed, cameras will have to be installed to cover every possible place where people might park on the highway within the zone. That is why it is going to cost so much to enforce the scheme.

The debate has been useful because it has brought out some of the less well-known weaknesses in the scheme. It may well have enabled Members who have taken the trouble to attend to avoid incurring additional penalty charges as a result of misunderstanding the scheme. The important message for those who are proposing and supporting the scheme is that there must be much better communication. They need to start listening to the people.

Much to my concern, the House will not be sitting on 17 February, so if the scheme goes ahead at that time we will not be able to hear the complaints and concerns of Londoners first hand and put them to Ministers. I assure the Minister that we will be hot on asking questions after that, if the scheme turns out to be the nightmare that we fear.

Column Number: 15

The Chairman: I am not altogether sure that I am any clearer about what the position is, and I am sure that people reading the report of the Committee will also have some difficulty understanding.

Question put:-

The Committee divided: Ayes 10, Noes, 2.

Division No. 2]

Bailey, Mr. Adrian Brake, Tom David, Mr. Wayne Foster, Mr. Don Keen, Alan
Marris, Rob Naysmith, Dr. Doug Ryan, Joan Spellar, Mr. John White, Brian

Chope, Mr. Christopher
Randall, Mr. John

Column Number: 16

Question accordingly agreed to.


    That the Committee has considered the Road User Charging (Charges and Penalty Charges) (London) Regulations 2001.

Committee rose at seventeen minutes past Five o'clock.

The following Members attended the Committee:
Hancock, Mr. Mike (Chairman)
Bailey, Mr.
Brake, Tom
Chope, Mr.
David, Mr.
Foster, Mr. Don
Keen, Alan
Marris, Rob
Martlew, Mr.
Naysmith, Dr.
Randall, Mr.
Ryan, Joan
Spellar, Mr.
White, Brian

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Prepared 6 November 2002