Brentwood: Blue Badge amnesty extended until end of this month

A Blue Badge amnesty has been extended until the end of July.

Some residents have had their Blue Badge applications delayed after a change which saw them now issued through a new centralised system operated by the Department for Transport instead of Essex County Council.

They must now organise independent mobility assessments, which is being blamed for the delay.

The council has extended the temporary amnesty for people whose badges expired on April 1 so people can continue to use their badges within the authority’s boundaries until the end of July. Blue Badge holders who qualify under the amnesty will also have any parking fines issued after April rescinded on appeal.

The change is to combat fraud and reduce the risk of abusing the Blue Badge system.

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County Cllr John Aldridge, cabinet member for adult social care, said: “We are very concerned about the delays that have occurred in renewing Blue Badges under the new arrangements.

“By extending the amnesty we can reduce the risk of those who genuinely need the Blue Badge scheme being penalised whilst the outcome of their application is determined, but I would recommend that Blue Badge holders submit their renewal applications some four to five weeks in advance of the current badge’s expiry.”

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