Increase in cost of blue badges for disabled drivers prompts consultation
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A 33p annual rise in the cost of a disabled driver’s blue badge has prompted Cambridgeshire County Council to call for a consultation to find out what the impact of the increase will be.
A disabled drivers badge could cost £10 for three years instead of £9, and the cost for replacing lost or stolen badges could rise from £5 to £10.
People are being asked to have their say on the plan for the mini price hike which would make the county fall in line with the national statutory amount.
Currently it costs Cambridgeshire County Council around £312,700 to administer the Blue Badge scheme but the council only receives £97,000 in income from badge applicants.
Members of the general purposes committee approved the launch of a consultation which will help understand the community impact of the proposed increase and whether any future reasonable rise should be linked to national guidelines.
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With £41 million to find in savings next year and more demand on council services the authority is looking at ways to reduce costs while protecting frontline services.
Even with the extra £17,000 income from the proposed increased charges the full cost will not be covered and the council will still subsidise the scheme by around £198,000.
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The costs of providing the badges has risen in the recent years as new anti-fraud and security measures have been introduced nationally.
Around 18,000 Blue Badge holders will be e-mailed about the survey and people will also be able to provide feedback or request a paper copy.
The survey closes on January 5 and can be found on the council’s website.