Saturday, December 12, 2015

Myki enforcement regime under review: more than 40,000 fines challenged

What the corporation conglomerate (commonly referred to as the 'government') is not going to tell  you (the masses) is that ALL Myki 'fines' are UNLAWFUL.

The best part about is that you don't have to be a 'Constitutional Lawyer' to prove it.

The people who give out the tickets are allegedly 'authorised officers', but in reality they have no lawful standing whatsoever.

It's NOT about 'unfair' it's about NO LAWFUL STATUS. 

Read article: Ex Victorian Officer comments on Fines

ref: http://corpau.blogspot.com.au/2014/03/ex-victorian-police-officer-comments-on.html

You can read the article from The Age publication from 10th December 2015 of the headline:

Myki enforcement regime under review: more than 40,000 fines challenged

Myki fines 'just unfair'

As reported in August, prominent barrister Julian Burnside explains why he has organised a team of junior barristers to defend travellers fined By Public Transport Victoria.
The enforcement of Victoria's problem-plagued myki technology is under an immediate government review amid concerns that the ticketing system cannot withstand legal scrutiny and thousands of commuters have been bullied into paying fines.

The state government will announce a sweeping review of the fare enforcement regime on Friday, and admits it doubts the current system is equitable, effective and fair.

The problem-plagued Myki technology - the fare enforcement regime is to undergo a review. The problem-plagued Myki technology - the fare enforcement regime is to undergo a review. Photo: Rebecca Hallas.
 
Fairfax Media can reveal that more than 40,000 infringement notices have been challenged by users and are under review by the Department of Transport, despite previous claims that the system of enforcement has a "robust legislative framework".

Public Transport Minister Jacinta Allan said the review by the Department of Economic Development, Jobs Transport and Resources would examine every aspect of fare enforcement including compliance activities, the quantum of fines and the process for challenging an infringement notice.

Among a range of options to be considered the department is expected to examine a proposal that would require commuters found without a valid myki card that had not been touched on to pay a premium to the standard fare, but escape a fine.

Illustration: Ron Tandberg Illustration: Ron Tandberg

The training and conduct of the department's authorised officers will also come under scrutiny.

And the option of a $75 on-the-spot fine for patrons who accept liability, which was introduced by the former Napthine Government, could be scrapped.

Ms Allan will receive recommendations from the department by March 2016.

"Fares support our public transport system and it's critical that their enforcement is equitable, effective and fair," Ms Allan said.

The announcement on Friday follows a series of reports by Fairfax Media and a legal campaign by eminent barrister Julian Burnside, QC, who has offered pro-bono advice to commuters contesting fines in the Magistrates Court.

In April, Mr Burnside accused the Department of Transport of bullying public transport users into accepting fines, despite them making all reasonable attempts to carry a valid ticket.

"It's nothing but a standover racket, if people are being bluffed into paying up when they could defend it because they haven't committed any offence," Mr Burnside said.

"The only way to beat a bully is to stand up to them," he said.

Data obtained by Fairfax Media revealed the vast majority of myki fines contested in court were withdrawn or dismissed by the department, but authorised officers continued to issue thousands of infringement notices.
Those willing to challenge the department in court were repeatedly denied access to myki performance and service records.

Fairfax Media revealed in 2013 that the Department of Transport had received written and verbal advice that false myki readings, administrative errors and poor calibration would hinder the chances of a prosecution in court.

"They [the transport department] don't want it to be tested in court, they just want the revenue. They need to prove beyond reasonable doubt and they simply can't," a former contractor said.

Another former employee of the department said concerns about the prosecution of myki fines in court had prompted the decision to introduce the cheaper $75 on-the-spot fines in 2014 in a bid to persuade commuters to accept liability when they did not have a valid ticket.

On-the-spot penalty fares came in for special criticism from Victoria's Public Transport Ombudsman last month, whose office has been flooded with complaints since the 12-month trial began early last year.

Under the system brought in by the former Napthine government, travellers caught without a valid ticket can choose to pay a $75 fare on the spot, instead of the full $223 fine.

Public Transport Users Association spokesman Daniel Bowen said the system took a punitive approach to revenue protection that seemingly made conflict between commuters and authorised officers inevitable.

"Fines are high for what may be a genuine mistake on the part of the user and there is very little in the way of discretion for authorised officers to allow someone the benefit of the doubt," Mr Bowen said.

Authorised officers issued more than 170,000 ticket infringements in 2014-15 and more than 69,000 on-the-spot penalty fares.

The penalty fare experiment yielded more than $5.2 million in consolidated revenue last financial year.
Public transport fare evasion fell to 5 per cent in May, the lowest level since records began to be kept in 2005. Fare evasion cost the system $38.2 million last financial year.

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