Council loses ULEZ court fight against Sadiq Khan and forced to pay £147,000

Hillingdon Council sought to block the ULEZ expansion, together with Surrey County Council and borough authorities in Bexley, Bromley and Harrow. Credit: MyLondon/BPM

A council which brought a legal challenge against Sadiq Khan over his expansion of London's ultra low emission zone has been forced to pay £147,000 in court costs after losing the case.

Hillingdon Council sought to block the move together with Surrey County Council and borough authorities in Bexley, Bromley and Harrow.

But the Mayor of London and Transport for London (TfL) came out on top on against the Tory councils - all of which will have to pay fees after the loss.

A spokesperson for the anti-ULEZ coalition said the £12.50 daily fee to drive a non-compliant vehicle was "hugely disappointed" at the High Court's decision.

People who drive in the zone in a vehicle which does not meet minimum emissions standards are now required to pay a £12.50 daily fee Credit: PA

But they added that politicians were "proud to have stood up for our residents and businesses".

Now, a large amount of taxpayers' cash has been handed over to the victors.

A spokesperson for Hillingdon council told MyLondon: “The total costs incurred by the council for its part in the coalition that brought a legal challenge against the ULEZ expansion were £147,853.20. This equates to a cost of around just 48p per resident.”

Sadiq Khan Credit: PA

The BBC has also reported that Surrey County Council has confirmed its total costs for the challenge come to £139,528.20.

This figure includes a £100,000 contribution to TfL costs and a £39,528.20 contribution to the five councils' total costs.

TfL's costs will reportedly be split between the five councils that brought the challenge.

Justice Jonathan Swift said in his judgement the the Mayor had the lawful power to order the expansion of the ULEZ.

He wrote: "The Mayor’s decision to confirm the 2022 Order as a variation of the existing charging scheme is consistent with his powers under Schedule 23 to the 1999 Act, and does not give rise to breach of any obligation imposed under that schedule."

The blue zone shows the former ULEZ zone while the green shows the now expanded ULEZ zone Credit: TfL

In addition, he said that information provided during the public consultation was "sufficient", including about Transport for London's (TfL) use of ANPR cameras.

But "it can fairly be said that some parts of the material published for the purposes of the consultation require careful reading".

On the £160 million scrappage scheme, which all Londoners with a non-compliant vehicle (broadly pre-2005 petrol and pre-2015 diesel) are entitled to a £2,000 grant from), the judgement concluded: "There has not, and could not plausibly be, any suggestion that Transport for London was required to formulate the consultation question on the scrappage scheme in any different way.

"No detailed information about any scrappage arrangements was necessary to respond to the question as it was posed."

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