Car tax changes scrapped as drivers would have been charged £600 a year in 'reckless' parking scheme

Car tax changes scrapped as drivers would have been charged £600 a year in 'reckless' parking scheme

WATCH: Parking ticket expert Barrie Segal on expensive costs

Hemma Visavadia

By Hemma Visavadia

Published: 24/05/2024

- 14:18

Updated: 24/05/2024

- 14:43

The levy could have raised around £10million every year if it was introduced

A local authority has scrapped a planned levy which would have seen drivers pay an additional £600 a year for parking.

Drivers who work in Edinburgh would have had to pay to park outside their building in a proposed Workplace Parking Levy.

However, following the conclusion of a public consultation, Edinburgh City Council have dropped plans to implement the scheme after receiving backlash from the public.

The parking tax formed part of the council’s City Mobility Plan and 2030 Climate Strategy which pledged to help reduce car mileage by around 30 per cent and stop vehicles clogging up the city.

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Paying for parking

Workplace parking fees will no longer go ahead in Edinburgh


The levy, which has been available to Scottish councils since 2022, allows each local authority to have the power to make employers pay an annual fee to the council for parking spaces provided for employees.

Local authorities can introduce levies across their borough and can use revenues collected from the tax to support the policies in their Local Transport Strategy.

However, parking places reserved for Blue Badge holders, healthcare workers at NHS premises and parking places at hospices will be exempt from charges.

Speaking in a Transport and Environment Committee meeting yesterday, councillors discussed a recent public survey in response to the proposed levy.

The online survey which ran between November 15, 2023, and February 3, 2024, detailed how 76 per cent of respondents were either a bit concerned, concerned or very concerned about congestion in the city.

Despite the survey showing support for the levy scheme, it would have cost the council £100,000 to implement, a sum that it would not be able to support.

It was estimated that the levy could bring in between £10million and £12million per year once it was fully operational in the Scottish capital.

Councillor Scott Arthur, from the Scottish Labour Party, explained that there were “mixed views” in the city.

He said: “It seems a lot of people don’t think a city-wide scheme would work, there’s talk of a zoned scheme in the city, or perhaps one that just focused on the city centre.

“And some employers said the rules weren’t entirely clear to them – and that’s because the council has still to largely define how the scheme would work in Edinburgh.”

Meanwhile, Councillor Marie-Clair Munro, a representative for the Scottish Conservatives, said the proposed levy is just a “tax by another name”.

Munro added any introduction of a workplace parking levy would be a “hammer blow” to hard-working people, particularly women, carers and low-paid workers and businesses.


Cars parked

Edinburgh Council would need to put £100,000 towards the implementation of the scheme


Addressing the committee, she noted that the use of £100,000 of taxpayers' money from reserves to further develop the “unnecessary and damaging proposals” would be “reckless and wasteful”.

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