Woman penalised for charging her car in Naas without a ticket has fines cancelled

Charging points are in public car parks in Naas

Paul O'Meara

Reporter:

Paul O'Meara

Email:

paul@leinsterleader.ie

Woman penalised for charging her car in Naas without a ticket has fines cancelled

Emma Priest

Kildare County Council has rescinded two parking tickets issued against an electric vehicle owner whose car was being charged at the time in Naas.

Emma Priest contacted the Leader having received the tickets while her car was charging at Hederman’s car park and the car park at Fairgreen, both of which are operated by KCC.

Ms Priest appealed unsuccessfully against both tickets but still refused to pay and said she would take the issue to court rather than pay the fines.

Ms Priest, who lives in Sallins, said she felt she had no option but to go to court.

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“It is the last thing I wanted to do, as I am a carer for my two daughters, each of whom have ADHD and ASD. However, I feel that this is not about me, or about a parking fine - this is about the much bigger issue of climate change and promoting fossil fuel alternativess” she said prior to the council’s decision.

While Ms Priest was relieved last week to receive the letters erasing the fines, she maintains that the issue is not about money.

“I think it’s scandalous that I should have to pay while I’m charging my car. I wouldn’t have to pay  if was filling my fuel tank with diesel or petrol. I object to having to pay to charge my car. If I went to court this would have gotten a bigger public hearing and maybe the issue of whether people should have to pay to charge their vehicle would have been sorted out.”

And while she will avoid picking up fines in the future the issue remains alive “because KCC says this is a once off decision and further offences will be penalised.”

KCC insists that it’s satisfied an offence has been committed.

However it decided to waive the fixed charge offence as a goodwill gesture “in this instance only.”

KCC says that people are still required to pay and display while charging EV vehicles in EV bays on all public roads and at all public car parks.

In a letter to Ms Priest, KCC further indicated that it would not consider waiving any future fines.