Parking machines: does time delivered correspond with coins paid?

David Johnson made this Freedom of Information request to Manchester City Council

This request has been closed to new correspondence. Contact us if you think it should be reopened.

The request was successful.

Dear Manchester City Council,

I'm trying to find out if you provide goods/services that correspond to the money you're given. I'm particularly concerned about parking machines. For example, if parking time is sold at 80 pence per hour and the buyer only has a £1 coin, then a fair trader either gives 20 pence change or provides an additional 20 pence-worth of time by pro-rating. A trader that keeps £1 and only delivers 80 pence worth of time is delivering a lesser quantity of
goods/services than corresponds with the price charged.

Pro-rating of goods/services is a popular method of trading that has been provided by machine suppliers for some time and is used by many organisations including those funded by taxpayer.

Specific questions:
1. State the number of parking machines under your control that accept coins.

2. State the tariffs for coin payments.

3. Provide details of machine types in terms of make, model,
version and approximate age (e.g. to the nearest 5 years).

4. State if the council uses pro-rated charging.

5. If the council does not use pro-rated charging, please provide dates and copies of documents where the feature was discussed and rejected.

6. If the council does not use pro-rated charging, please state when it will be next discussed.

Yours faithfully,

David Johnson

Manchester City Council

Dear Mr Johnson

Re: Request for Information - Reference No: NBH/8XUGR8

Thank you for your request for information received by Manchester City
Council on 5th September 2012.

Please note that it may take up to 20 working days (approximately 4 weeks)
for the Council to consider your request and to provide a formal response.

If this timescale needs to be extended to consider an exemption you will be
notified and kept informed.

If you have any queries, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Yours sincerely

Cath Cryer
Information Compliance Unit
Democratic Services
PO Box 532
Town Hall
Albert Square
M60 2LA

Email: [Manchester City Council request email]

show quoted sections

This email has been scanned by the Symantec Email service.
For more information please visit

Manchester City Council

2 Attachments

Dear Mr Johnson, please find attached the reply to your recent FOI request
reference NBH/8XUGR8.


Mike Ashman
CCTV Officer and Departmental Complaints Coordinator.
CCTV Services,
Business Units, Neighbourhood Services
CCTV Control Room
61 High Street
M4 1AZ

Business Units, Neighbourhood Services
Manchester City Council
Tel: 0161 817 8911
[mobile number]

Postal Address: Manchester City Council, P.O. Box 532 Town Hall,
Manchester, M60 3NY

Please save paper and only print this email out if essential


show quoted sections


This email has been scanned by the Symantec Email service.
For more information please visit

David Johnson left an annotation ()

Many thanks for your comprehensive reply.

I now understand that what I called 'pro-rating' is called 'linear' charging by the manufacturers or even 'stepped linear' if there are multiple linear rates (one linear rate for 2-3 hours and another linear rate for 3-4 hours, plus a minimum charge). It's a popular method that allows users to get time credit for each coin inserted. I hope you'll consider it in future.

This FOI request can now be closed.