The State Penalties Enforcement Registry (SPER) has warned locals to pay their fines or risk serious enforcement actions, including having their car clamped or seized.
Logan-Beaudesert has the highest outstanding SPER debts in Queensland, according to the latest data, with an outstanding balance of more than $145 million.
It should be noted Logan (345,098 people) logged a population 23 times that of Beaudesert (14,674 people) in the 2021 Census.
In Logan-Beaudesert, 46,473 people have a combined 514,092 outstanding SPER debts.
SPER is a division of the Queensland Government revenue office, responsible for the collection and enforcement of unpaid fines.
Recent news reports showed debt collectors targeting the Sunshine Coast, which is listed as having the ninth-largest outstanding SPER debts in the state,
In response to an enquiry from the Bulletin over whether Beaudesert should prepare for a similar blitz locally, SPER provided a statement from a spokesperson.
“Enforcement operations are conducted on an ongoing basis in the Greater Brisbane area, which includes Logan and Beaudesert, while regional areas are visited throughout the year as part of a state-wide program,” the spokesperson said.
“Clamping and seizing vehicles is only one of the enforcement actions that SPER takes where people refuse to pay their debts. SPER can also take money from debtors’ bank accounts or wages and suspend driver licences to ensure debtors meet their obligations.”
The spokesperson detailed a rise in the collection of SPER debts.
“SPER collections increased by around $30 million in the 2021-22 financial year compared to 2020-21, despite COVID restrictions and suspensions of enforcement activity in areas affected by flood events. Across the Logan-Beaudesert region, SPER collected more than $28 million last financial year,” they said.
“Improvements have been driven by new initiatives, which included establishing a dedicated Debt Management Centre in Ipswich, improving the quality our data to better locate debtors and enhancing SPER’s field enforcement capabilities.”