§ Mr. Arthur Lewis
asked the Secretary of State for Transport whether he will give for the latest and most convenient stated period of time the actual or estimated amounts of fines imposed for individual Road Traffic Act offences which have not been paid; how long these fines have been outstanding for payment; and to what extent he believes that his new proposals for ticket offences will deal with the problem of offenders refusing to pay their penalties.
§ Mr. Mayhew
I have been asked to reply.
The information collected centrally on unpaid fines does not distinguish the offences for which the fines were imposed. The proposals of the interdepartmental working party of road traffic law in its report published on 20 May are concerned with the scope and enforcement of the fixed penalty system, which offers the option of avoiding prosecution. In 1978 in England and Wales there were some 900,000 cases in which fixed penalties amounting to £5,400,000, were not paid. The working party's recommendations on the enforcement of fixed penalties 453W are designed to secure payment in a substantially higher proportion of cases. The Government will decide, in the light of comments received, whether to introduce legislation giving effects to those recommendations.