Skip to main content

Off-Road Vehicles (Registration) Bill

Volume 462: debated on Thursday 28 June 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) what discussions he has had with the Association of Chief Police Officers on the implementation of the Off-Road Vehicles (Registration) Bill if enacted in its current form; (144342)

(2) if he will make an assessment of the likely implications for police forces of implementation of the Off-Road Vehicles (Registration) Bill if enacted in its current form; and if he will make a statement.

Officials in my Department have discussed the Off-Road Vehicles (Registration) Bill, with colleagues in ACPO as well as other Government Departments. In particular, Home Office discussions have focused on any potential impact to the police following implementation if enacted in its current form.

It is difficult to say with great certainty what impact such a Bill would have in practice, as an assessment of non-compliance has not been made. However initial estimates would suggest that additional burdens on the police would be inevitable and costly. ACPO have estimated that at a minimum for ad-hoc enforcement which does not include costs to the Crown Prosecution Service or HMCS, could be in the region of £50 million over three years, based on investigating approximately 300,000 vehicles a year. This does not include the costs of mounting an enforcement operation, but is based on the time it would take an officer to deal with the offence, such as dealing with the offender, arranging recovery of the vehicle and supervising the event. It also includes any necessary paperwork and officer time to prepare for court if that is applicable.

Without a full and proper assessment of a registration scheme and its likely impact on the police and given that there is a range of existing legislation available to the police to deal with this nuisance which is effective and being used, the Home Office strongly opposes the introduction of this particular private Member's Bill.