Wednesday, 20 February 2019 13:51


Both Labour and the Tories backed plans for a workplace parking levy before mounting “embarrassing and hypocritical” campaigns against giving councils greater financial responsibility.

Tory councillors in Edinburgh last year voted in favour of the council “pursuing the power for Edinburgh to seek consent to introduce a workplace parking Levy”.

And in 2017, Labour councillors in both Edinburgh and Glasgow stood on manifesto commitments to explore introducing a levy.

Tory councillors across Scotland have been publicly campaigning against the introduction of a workplace parking levy – even where they are themselves in administration, and so the only people capable of implementing a levy.

And several Tory councils have introduced parking charges – showing their latest complaints to be baseless opportunism.

Commenting, SNP MSP George Adam said:

“The Tories and Labour have been caught out running embarrassing and hypocritical campaigns against a measure they themselves have been demanding.

“Indeed, several Tory councils have themselves introduced car parking charges despite now decrying them, in an act of breath-taking hypocrisy.

“The public can see right through this two-faced opportunism – parties who demand localism in one breath and then demand Scottish Government acts against such policies in the next. 

“Ultimately, it will be up to local authorities to decide whether a workplace parking levy is right for their areas – and if Labour, Tory or SNP councils oppose their use, that’s their choice.

“But it is outright hypocrisy to oppose giving councils that choice when their own parties have demanded it.”

  • In a meeting of Edinburgh Council’s Transport and Environment committee last August, Tory councillors voted for an amendment which noted “the merits in principle of pursuing the power for Edinburgh to seek consent to introduce a Workplace Parking Levy” and for the development of a paper on the possible pros and cons for the introduction of a Workplace Parking Levy.
  • Labour, in their Edinburgh manifesto for the 2017 Local Elections, said that “A levy on workplace parking spaces in the city centre, could be used to speed up measures to reduce air pollution”
  • Labour, in their Glasgow manifesto for the 2017 Local Elections, said that “a labour council will…establish a Clean Air Task Force to tackle city congestions by examining proposals such as Low Emission Zones and a Workplace Parking Levy”

What is being proposed is for local authorities to exercise a judgment as to whether they wish to apply a workplace parking levy. Despite this:

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