Thursday, 13 November 2014

BPA propose hiving off the AOS

The British Parking Association Limited is proposing hiving off the Approved Operator Scheme to a separate body. The BPA will maintain the Code of Practice while the new organisation administers it.

The Prankster suggest a different strategy would be better. It is confusing for motorists to have to deal with two different trade associations, the BPA Ltd and the IPC, both of whom have different codes of practices . The confusion is increased as members move from one association to the other, depending on who at the time is offering the appeals system most biased against the motorist.

Furthermore, we have seen that the BPA adjusts its code of practice according to the whims of its larger members, and does not take account of the requirements of fairness towards motorists, landowners and smaller members.

The code of practice would therefore belong best in the hands of an independent body. The BPA has denied several times that it has the power to regulate the sector. Regulation would also benefit from being in the hands of an independent body. The Prankster suggests that this body would set the code of practice and set minimum standards for all trade association members. Individual trade associations can supplement these if they wish. The body would also regulate the sector. It would be independent, but funded by parking operators.

The Prankster also suggests a change to the current scheme, which is not working because sanctions are so draconian they are never used. Instead, financial penalties will be imposed on members who make minor transgressions. The body would also have the power to cancel incorrectly issued charges and direct operators to make payments to motorists for incorrectly issued charges.

What the industry needs to shake it up and force it to play fair is a regulator with teeth.

Happy Parking

The Parking Prankster

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