Lord Street in Southport

Blue Badge applications in Sefton have shot up by 39% since 2019. 

The “significant increase” in numbers has seen Sefton Council have to increase staffing levels to cope with the demand. 

It has led to some delays in dealing with requests as staff look to help people as quickly as they can. 

The issue was raised by Southport Dukes Ward councillor Sir Ron Watson at the full Sefton Council meeting. 

He said: “I have been advised by a constituent over a situation which seems to have developed when a Blue Badge Parking Pass is lost. 

“My constituent unfortunately did lose his pass – something which could happen to anybody – and filled in the appropriate documentation and sent the required £10 fee for a new pass to be issued. 

“He was advised by the Department that there was a significant delay and that no post from the 15th September 2023 had as yet been opened and this would include his individual situation.

“Would the Cabinet Member please advise the Council of the current situation with an explanation as to how this situation has developed and confirm what arrangements have been made to issue a temporary document which could replace the Blue Badge Pass and would be accepted by those checking that cars are parked appropriately in the designated areas.”

Sefton Council Cabinet Member for Regulatory, Compliance and Corporate Services Councillor Paulette Lappin said: ““There has been a significant increase in the volume of Blue Badge applications in recent months and they are currently running at 624 per month – a 39% increase on 2019 and 22% increase in the last year alone. 

“In order to meet this demand staffing levels have recently been increased, but inevitably this has caused a delay in dealing with applications and contacts.

“There is a delay in opening post but it does not go back to the 15th September. 

“The Council is not allowed to issue temporary Blue Badges and will not issue temporary “permits” to Blue Badge holders as it feels such permits would be confusing to motorists, as they would only be recognised in Sefton Council owned parking areas and would not allow motorists to park in private car parks, hospitals, supermarkets and other Local Authority areas.”

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