Diplomatic Representations for Congestion Charging / PCN's

The request was successful.

Dear Sir / Madam,

Freedom of Information Act, 2000

Under the above act, I should be obliged if you would disclose the following information:

* A copy of the "Diplomatic NOR Template" (as referenced on pages 40 - 42 of the TfL document "Criteria for dealing with Representations and Appeals" [1])

* The number of Congestion Charge / PCN / FPN tickets that have had their charges waived / appeals granted / rejected where the appellant has declared their vehicle or journey to be of diplomatic purpose.

I would like this information from 01 January 2005 if possible, but
if such a timescale is not possible, please provide as much
information as you can, within the time available to you.

I look forward to hearing from you within the statutory timescale
permitted by the Act, but should you have any queries or require
any clarification, please do not hesitate in responding to this
email.

With kind regards,

Martyn Dewar

[1] This document was previously disclosed by TFL, under FOIto another requestor: http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/cr...

Transport for London

Our Ref : 1006777728

Date : 02.06.2010

Mr Martyn Dewar

[FOI #36353 email]

Dear Mr Dewar

Thank you for your request for information dated 31.05.2010 which was
received by Transport for London on 31.05.2010 concerning request for
diplomatic NOR template. This request will be dealt with under the terms
of the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

We aim to deal with your request promptly and provide you with a response
by 29.06.2010.

In the meantime, if you have any queries or would like to discuss your
request, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Once again, thank you for taking the time to contact us.

Yours sincerely

Patricia Mitchell

Head of Customer Services, Surface Transport

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Dear Ms Mitchell,

Thank you for your email of the 2nd of June, committing to respond by no later than the 29th of June (yesterday).

Unfortunately; as of yet, I have not received a response from you, therefore could you please provide an update on any revised timescale that you may have for supplying this information?

I look forward to hearing from you, and thank you in advance for your assistance.

Yours faithfully,

Martyn Dewar

Transport for London

 

Thank you for your email.  We can now confirm that this has been
received. 

 

For further information about the Surface Transport Complaints and
Feedback Policy including timescales, please see
[1]http://www.tfl.gov.uk/corporate/about-tf...

 

Problems with roadworks or other street faults? In support of the
Mayor’s Streetworks Code of Conduct to help cut congestion, please
report these issues by visiting
[2]http://www.tfl.gov.uk/roadusers/reportas...

 

show quoted sections

References

Visible links
1. http://www.tfl.gov.uk/corporate/about-tf...
2. http://www.tfl.gov.uk/roadusers/reportas...

Transport for London

1 Attachment

Our Ref: 1006777728/GH

Date: 30.06.2010

Dear Mr Dewar

Thank you for your email received by TfL on 30 June 2010, concerning your
request for information about Congestion Charge payments by Diplomats.

Your request is being considered under the Freedom of Information
Act. Unfortunately we will not be able to resolve your request within the
statutory 20 working day deadline. This is because it is taking longer
than expected to compile this information.

We will respond as soon as possible and in any case by 14 July 2010.
Please accept my apologies for this delay and any inconvenience it may
cause you. In the meantime, if you have any queries relating to your
request, please contact Graham Hurt, Correspondence Support Manager -
London Streets at [1][email address] .

If you are not satisfied with this response, please read the attached
help-sheet entitled ‘Your Right to Appeal’.

Yours sincerely

Patricia Mitchell

Head of Customer Services

Transport for London
Surface Transport Customer Services

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Original Text

From: [FOI #36353 email]
To: [email address]
<[email address]>
CC:
Sent: 30.06.10 12:07:45
Subject: RE: URGENT FW: FOI-Dewar-TfL106112- due 29/06/2010

Dear Ms Mitchell,

Thank you for your email of the 2nd of June, committing to respond
by no later than the 29th of June (yesterday).

Unfortunately; as of yet, I have not received a response from you,
therefore could you please provide an update on any revised
timescale that you may have for supplying this information?

I look forward to hearing from you, and thank you in advance for
your assistance.

Yours faithfully,

Martyn Dewar

show quoted sections

Transport for London

1 Attachment

Our Ref: 1006777728/SR

Date: 14.07.2010

Mr M Dewar

[FOI #36353 email]

Dear Mr Dewar

Thank you for your e-mail received by Transport for London on 31 May 2010.
You have asked for information about Congestion Charge payments by
Diplomats. Your request is being considered under the Freedom of
Information Act.

Unfortunately, we will not be able to resolve your request within the
statutory 20 working day deadline. This is because it is taking longer
than expected to compile this information.

We will respond as soon as possible and in any case by 30 July 2010.
Please accept my apologies for this delay and any inconvenience it may
cause you. In the meantime, if you have any queries relating to your
request, contact Graham Hurt, Correspondence Support Manager - London
Streets at [1][email address] .

If you are not satisfied with this response, please read the attached
help-sheet entitled ‘Your Right to Appeal’.

Yours sincerely

Patricia Mitchell

Head of Customer Services

Transport for London

Surface Transport Customer Services

For further information about TfL’s services please visit
[2]www.tfl.gov.uk/contact

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Transport for London

1 Attachment

Our Ref: 1006777728/GH

Date: 29.07.2010

Dear Mr Dewar

I write further to my email of 30 June 2010, concerning your Freedom of
Information request for information about Congestion Charge payments by
Diplomats.

Please accept my apologies for the delay in providing you with a response
to this request. We are continuing to work on this and will respond fully
as soon as possible, and in any case by 20 August 2010.

Please accept my apologies for this delay and any inconvenience it may
cause you. In the meantime, if you have any queries relating to your
request, please contact Graham Hurt, Correspondence Support Manager -
London Streets at [1][email address] .

If you are not satisfied with this response, please read the attached
help-sheet entitled ‘Your Right to Appeal’.

Yours sincerely

Patricia Mitchell

Head of Customer Services

Transport for London
Surface Transport Customer Services

From: [email address]
To: request-36353-2790d224@whatdotheykn
<[email address]>
CC:
Sent: 30.06.10 15:31:29
Subject: Freedom of Information request - Diplomatic Representations for
Congestion Charging / PCN's

Our Ref: 1006777728/GH

Date: 30.06.2010

Dear Mr Dewar

Thank you for your email received by TfL on 30 June 2010, concerning your
request for information about Congestion Charge payments by Diplomats.

Your request is being considered under the Freedom of Information
Act. Unfortunately we will not be able to resolve your request within the
statutory 20 working day deadline. This is because it is taking longer
than expected to compile this information.

We will respond as soon as possible and in any case by 14 July 2010.
Please accept my apologies for this delay and any inconvenience it may
cause you. In the meantime, if you have any queries relating to your
request, please contact Graham Hurt, Correspondence Support Manager -
London Streets at [2][email address] .

If you are not satisfied with this response, please read the attached
help-sheet entitled ‘Your Right to Appeal’.

Yours sincerely

Patricia Mitchell

Head of Customer Services

Transport for London
Surface Transport Customer Services

DO NOT DELETE.............................
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Original Text

From: [FOI #36353 email]
To: [email address]
<[email address]>
CC:
Sent: 30.06.10 12:07:45
Subject: RE: URGENT FW: FOI-Dewar-TfL106112- due 29/06/2010

Dear Ms Mitchell,

Thank you for your email of the 2nd of June, committing to respond
by no later than the 29th of June (yesterday).

Unfortunately; as of yet, I have not received a response from you,
therefore could you please provide an update on any revised
timescale that you may have for supplying this information?

I look forward to hearing from you, and thank you in advance for
your assistance.

Yours faithfully,

Martyn Dewar

show quoted sections

Dear Ms Mitchell,

Re: FOI request 'Diplomatic Representations for Congestion Charging / PCN's'. - Request for Internal Review

Thank you for your email advising that there has been another delay in your response to my FoI request.

As this is now the third such delay TfL has imposed, I am forced to come to the conclusion that TfL is attempting to avoid disclosing information; which should be readily available.

As such, I must regrettably ask that you pass this onto the relevant party within TfL for a Internal Review to be conducted, on the basis that this FoI request does not appear to be being handled under the spirit of the FoI act, which encourages "openness"; and that no valid reason for delay has been supplied (your continued reliance on the excuse of "it "taking longer
than expected to compile this information" is not plausible over such a long time-frame).

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address:
http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/di...

I shall look forward to TfL's response within the statutory period, and would ask that you confirm receipt of this request.

Yours faithfully,

Martyn Dewar

Transport for London

2 Attachments

Our Ref: 1006777728/GH

Date: 02.08.2010

Dear Mr Dewar

Thank you for your email received by TfL on 1 June 2010. You asked for
information about Congestion Charge payments by diplomats. Your request
has been considered under the requirements of the Freedom of Information
Act.

In respect of the information requested, please find attached the
Diplomatic NOR (notice of rejection) template as referred to on pages 40
- 42 of the TfL document 'Criteria for dealing with Representations and
Appeals'. The purpose of this document, which deals specifically with
Congestion Charging, is to provide guidelines on how to deal with
representations from motorists claiming that a Penalty Charge Notice (PCN)
is invalid as the vehicle was used for diplomatic purposes.

You also requested the number of PCNs and Fixed Penalty Notices (FPNs)
that have had their charges waived, or appeals granted or rejected where
the appellant has declared their vehicle or journey to be of diplomatic
purpose. TfL gives PCNs to drivers who disobey Red Route regulations on
parking and loading, banned manoeuvres, and yellow box junctions, or who
fail to pay any applicable Congestion Charging or Low Emission Zone
charges. TfL does not use FPNs for any of these violations.

Specifically regarding the Congestion Charge PCNs, it is accepted that the
Diplomatic Privileges Act 1964 and the Consular Relations Act 1968 (which
give the force of law to the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations
1961 and the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations 1963) each serve to
exempt diplomats and consular officials from certain charges, but it is
not accepted that the Congestion Charge falls within those exemptions. The
Congestion Charge is not a tax but falls within the scope of Article 34(e)
of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations 1961, in that it is a
charge for specific services rendered. The £8 Congestion Charge therefore
needs to be paid for each day a vehicle travels within the Congestion
Charging Zone during operational hours. Save for the specific privileges
and immunities conferred by the 1964 and 1968 Acts, diplomatic and
consular officials and their families are subject to the general laws of
the United Kingdom and are not entitled to general exemptions from those
laws. While some Embassies have previously raised objections about paying
the Congestion Charge, diplomats and Consular officials and their families
engaged on official business or otherwise are not exempt or entitled to a
100% discount from the Congestion Charge.

I would like to point out that despite publicity regarding diplomatic
vehicles protesting the Congestion Charge, the vast majority of Embassies
pay the Congestion Charge as they are required to do. Only a minority,
most notably the United States Embassy, refuse to pay the charge. The
Mayor and TfL are committed to engaging with the Embassies in a proactive
manner in order to seek a resolution to this matter.

As detailed above, TfL does not accept that diplomats are exempt from the
Congestion Charge or PCNs resulting from failure to pay this charge.
Therefore, no representations have been accepted or appeals allowed on
these grounds.

If this is not the information you are looking for, or if you are unable
to access it for some reason, please contact Graham Hurt, Correspondence
Support Manager - London Streets at [1][email address] .

Please see the attached information sheet for details of your right to
appeal as well as information on copyright and what to do if you would
like to re-use any of the information we have disclosed.

Yours sincerely

Patricia Mitchell

Head of Customer Services

Transport for London
Surface Transport Customer Services

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Dear Ms Mitchell,

Thank you for your email of 02 August disclosing in full the information that I had requested.

As you may note, on 29 July I requested an Internal Review be carried out by TfL in regards to the handling of this FoI request.

I still wish this review to go ahead, since the time taken by TfL to disclose this information is unacceptable; and no explanation has been offered as to what the delay was.

The full text of my request is available at: http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/di...

I would appreciate it if this could be passed to the appropriate person in TfL for attention as soon as practical; and response made within the statutory period (usually 20 working days).

Yours faithfully,

Martyn Dewar

Transport for London

 

Thank you for your email.  We can now confirm that this has been
received. 

 

For further information about the Surface Transport Complaints and
Feedback Policy including timescales, please see
[1]http://www.tfl.gov.uk/corporate/about-tf...

 

Problems with roadworks or other street faults? In support of the
Mayor’s Streetworks Code of Conduct to help cut congestion, please
report these issues by visiting
[2]http://www.tfl.gov.uk/roadusers/reportas...

 

show quoted sections

References

Visible links
1. http://www.tfl.gov.uk/corporate/about-tf...
2. http://www.tfl.gov.uk/roadusers/reportas...

Transport for London

Our Ref : 1006777728

Date : 04.08.2010

Mr M Dewar

[FOI #36353 email]

Dear Mr Dewar

Thank you for your request for information dated 03/08/10 which was
received by Transport for London on 03/08/10. This request will be dealt
with under the terms of the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

We aim to deal with your request promptly and provide you with a response
by 31/08/10.

In the meantime, if you have any queries or would like to discuss your
request, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Once again, thank you for taking the time to contact us.

Yours sincerely

Patricia Mitchell

Head of Customer Services, Surface Transport

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Original Text

From: [FOI #36353 email]
To: [email address] <[email address]>
CC:
Sent: 03.08.10 11:30:53
Subject: Internal review of Freedom of Information request - Diplomatic
Representations for Congestion Charging / PCN's

Dear Ms Mitchell,

Thank you for your email of 02 August disclosing in full the
information that I had requested.

As you may note, on 29 July I requested an Internal Review be
carried out by TfL in regards to thehandling of this FoI request.

I still wish this review to go ahead, since the time taken by TfL
to disclose this information is unacceptable; and no explanation
has been offered as to what the delay was.

The full text of my request is available at:
http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/di...

I would appreciate it if this could be passed to the appropriate
person in TfL for attention as soon as practical; and response made
within the statutory period (usually 20 working days).

Yours faithfully,

Martyn Dewar

show quoted sections

FOI, Transport for London

1 Attachment

04 August 2010

Our ref: IRV-045-1011

Dear Mr Dewar

Thank you for your email in which you confirmed that you still require an
internal review of TfLs handling of your FOI request.

An internal review will be carried out in accordance with the attached
procedure and a response will be provided to you by 26 August 2010.

Kind regards

Matthew Towey | Compliance Adviser
Information Access & Compliance Team | Corporate Governance | Transport
for London

5th Floor, Windsor House, 42-50 Victoria Street, London SW1H 0TL
T: 020 7126 3063/ auto 63063

From: [FOI #36353 email]
To: [email address]
Subject: Internal review of Freedom of Information request - Diplomatic
Representations for Congestion Charging / PCN's
Dear Ms Mitchell,

Thank you for your email of 02 August disclosing in full the
information that I had requested.

As you may note, on 29 July I requested an Internal Review be
carried out by TfL in regards to thehandling of this FoI request.

I still wish this review to go ahead, since the time taken by TfL
to disclose this information is unacceptable; and no explanation
has been offered as to what the delay was.

The full text of my request is available at:
http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/di...

I would appreciate it if this could be passed to the appropriate
person in TfL for attention as soon as practical; and response made
within the statutory period (usually 20 working days).

Yours faithfully,

Martyn Dewar

show quoted sections

FOI, Transport for London

09 August 2010

Our ref: IRV-045-1011

Dear Mr Dewar

The internal review of your Freedom of Information request has been
completed. The review was undertaken in accordance with TfL's internal
review procedure.

The review noted that the template you requested is available via TfL's
request directory ([1]http://www.tfl.gov.uk/foi/14906.aspx). TfL should
have informed you, within 20 working days, that the template was
accessible via other means. TfL should also have informed you that no
representations have been accepted or appeals allowed on the grounds that
the recipient has declared their vehicle or journey to be of diplomatic
purpose.

The review found that in failing to respond to your request within 20
working days TfL failed to comply with section 10 of the Freedom of
Information Act. The time taken to respond to your request was due to
delays in management approval of the draft response. Following this review
those involved in handling this request will be reminded of their
obligations under the Freedom of Information Act.

On behalf of TfL please accept my apologies for the way in which your
request was handled. If you are dissatisfied with the outcome of this
internal review, you can refer the matter to the independent authority
responsible for enforcing the Freedom of Information Act at the following
address.

Information Commissioner's Office

Wycliffe House

Water Lane

Wilmslow

Cheshire

SK9 5AF

A complaint form is available on the ICO's website ([2]www.ico.gov.uk).

Yours sincerely

Matthew Towey | Compliance Adviser
Information Access & Compliance Team | Corporate Governance | Transport
for London

5th Floor, Windsor House, 42-50 Victoria Street, London SW1H 0TL
T: 020 7126 3063/ auto 63063

From: FOI
Sent: 04 August 2010 10:35
To: '[FOI #36353 email]'
Subject: Internal review of Freedom of Information request - Diplomatic
Representations for Congestion Charging / PCN's

04 August 2010

Our ref: IRV-045-1011

Dear Mr Dewar

Thank you for your email in which you confirmed that you still require an
internal review of TfLs handling of your FOI request.

An internal review will be carried out in accordance with the attached
procedure and a response will be provided to you by 26 August 2010.

Kind regards

Matthew Towey | Compliance Adviser
Information Access & Compliance Team | Corporate Governance | Transport
for London

5th Floor, Windsor House, 42-50 Victoria Street, London SW1H 0TL
T: 020 7126 3063/ auto 63063

From: [FOI #36353 email]
To: [email address]
Subject: Internal review of Freedom of Information request - Diplomatic
Representations for Congestion Charging / PCN's
Dear Ms Mitchell,

Thank you for your email of 02 August disclosing in full the
information that I had requested.

As you may note, on 29 July I requested an Internal Review be
carried out by TfL in regards to thehandling of this FoI request.

I still wish this review to go ahead, since the time taken by TfL
to disclose this information is unacceptable; and no explanation
has been offered as to what the delay was.

The full text of my request is available at:
http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/di...

I would appreciate it if this could be passed to the appropriate
person in TfL for attention as soon as practical; and response made
within the statutory period (usually 20 working days).

Yours faithfully,

Martyn Dewar

References

Visible links
1. http://www.tfl.gov.uk/foi/14906.aspx
2. http://www.ico.gov.uk/

Hi Matthew,

Thank you for your email and for your swift response to my request for Internal Review.

I can confirm I am happy with the outcome of this review, and the action TfL is taking as a result to remedy it's non-compliance with FoIA.

Many thanks for your assistance.

Yours sincerely,

Martyn Dewar

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