Machine translations by Deepl, 26 February 2016: 'Supreme Court puts line through license plate parking'

"It is definitely not necessary to enter a correct license plate number for paid parking. The Supreme Court ruled that on Friday in a case of a woman who had paid for her parking via an app in Amsterdam with an incorrect license plate number. During an inspection, the woman received a parking fine because the correct license plate number was not known.

The Supreme Court holds that a wrong license plate number is not grounds for a fine. This is because the law states that a fine can only be imposed if a parking fee has not been paid and in this case it was.

Since early last year, the district court and court of appeal in Amsterdam had already reached the same verdict in this and similar cases.

Amsterdam was one of the first municipalities to introduce license plate parking. A good number of other municipalities followed suit. By having parkers fill in their license plates, parking attendants can check by just scanning the license plates. Amsterdam also has a number of scan cars driving around that scan license plates fully automatically.

Privacy First pleased with Supreme Court ruling

Privacy First has welcomed the Supreme Court's ruling that license plate parking should not be made mandatory. The civil rights organisation had previously won a victory in a lower court, but was not involved in the case decided by the Supreme Court. "Maybe it was someone who was inspired by us," guesses director Vincent Böhre. "But we are very happy with it."

The ruling is good news for people who want to move around the streets anonymously, says Böhre. "That could be anyone. People who go to a doctor or psychiatrist, but also people who do not want to be followed from their profession, such as lawyers or journalists."

Amsterdam should now, if it is up to Privacy First, start checking for parking tickets behind the windscreen again. "That also happens in Utrecht and Haarlem, for example, even though they also have license plate parking there."

The organisation is not done with Amsterdam yet, Böhre announced. Privacy First will soon start summary proceedings against the municipality to have the text on the parking meters changed. Currently, they still state that parkers are obliged to enter a license plate number. There will also be an administrative law case against the municipality to enable anonymous payment. This is because it is now only possible to pay by card in the capital.

Rotterdam ignores ban on license plate parking

The municipality of Rotterdam disregards the highest court which ruled on Friday that license plate parking should not be made compulsory. The Maas city considers it too much hassle and too expensive to change the system.

Privacy First, which strongly opposes license plate parking, is baffled by the municipality's response. "Unbelievable to ignore a ruling by the highest court," said a spokesperson for the civil rights organisation. (...)"  

Sources: , &, 26 February 2016.

Postscript Privacy First, 8 March 2016: Indeed, an interview with Radio Rijnmond on 26 February showed that Rotterdam essentially disregards the Supreme Court's ruling, as correctly reported by the Telegraaf. Privacy First considers this position of the Rotterdam municipality reprehensible and contrary to the trias politica. We hope the Rotterdam city council will soon put a stop to this and shake up Rotterdam's parking policy. If not, all that remains for Rotterdam is another go to court. Below is the relevant interview with Privacy First chairman Bas Filippini and a spokesperson from the Rotterdam municipality on Radio Rijnmond. Click HERE for our full press release, media and local political reactions following the Supreme Court ruling.