DRIVERS in Sandwell who perform illegal U-turns or stop in yellow box junction may soon be fined by the local council, cabinet papers reveal.

The papers, to be debated by Sandwell councillors at this week’s cabinet meeting, show the local authority will apply to the government for enforcement powers to fine reckless drivers.

The deadline for Sandwell Council to apply for the powers from the Department for Transport (DfT) is 25 October.

The fines – or Penalty Charge Notices (PCNs) – will be issued with Moving Traffic Enforcement (MTE) at the higher level of £70 for “moving traffic contraventions” – reduced to £35 if paid within 14 days in line with existing traffic enforcement policy in the borough.

Moving traffic contraventions include:

incorrectly driving into a bus lane

stopping in a yellow box junction

banned right or left turns

illegal U-turns

going the wrong way in a one-way street

ignoring a Traffic Regulation Order (TRO).

If approved, the council will create a business case outlining the need for enforcement powers.

Money to implement enforcement powers will be “cost neutral to the authority and local taxpayer”, according to the papers.

A public consultation with Sandwell residents and West Midlands police chief constable, Craig Guildford, will take place for six weeks, planned to commence in July 2023.

The ongoing operational costs of enforcement powers will be met from penalty charge incomes – but will take up to 12 months.

An extract of the cabinet report reads: “Acquiring these powers will allow Sandwell to be more proactive in improving road safety, air quality, congestion, and network management.

“In addition, having these powers will provide an effective tool to respond to resident, school, and councillors’ concerns in a more positive and proactive manner.

“Currently all issues related to non-compliance are referred to the local police who have limited resource available for moving traffic enforcement.”

Unlike funds raised from speed camera fines, which are transferred to government, funds from moving traffic enforcement fines will be kept by the local authority.

It means Sandwell Council will use the money to fund highway infrastructure projects, pay for environmental improvements in the borough, and improve road safety.

Councils in Birmingham, Walsall and Coventry have already applied for traffic enforcement powers while local authorities in Dudley, Solihull and Wolverhampton intend to apply in October 2023.