Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

MSPs pass controversial workplace parking tax

Transport Secretary Michael Matheson.
Transport Secretary Michael Matheson.

Politicians last night voted in favour of giving councils the power to introduce workplace parking taxes, despite opposition attempts to overturn the Scottish Government proposal.

The levy was originally proposed in Finance Secretary Derek Mackay’s budget earlier this year, and is part of the Transport (Scotland) Bill.

The controversial measure is being introduced after the SNP government reached a deal with the Scottish Greens to agree its budget.

It will give local authorities the choice of whether to impose the levy but, if they chose to then do so, employers would have to pay an annual tax to the council for every parking space that they provide.

There are fears that this cost could be passed onto staff.

A Scottish Labour amendment calling for the removal of the proposal from the Bill was rejected by 65 votes to 54 last night.

Labour MSP Neil Bibby described the tax as a “regressive” move that would hit the lowest-paid and would make little impact on climate change.

Mr Bibby added that it was “not an option” because public transport in Scotland was “simply not good enough” to get people out of their cars.

Transport Secretary Michael Matheson accused Scottish Labour of “hypocrisy” over its opposition to the proposal, highlighting the introduction of a similar scheme at the Labour-run Nottingham City council.

Mr Matheson also said that the proposal was a “power, not a duty” for councils.

But the move was criticised by the Scottish Retail Consortium, which argued that it would harm businesses.

David Lonsdale, director of the organisation, said: “Workplace parking levies are a charter for extra cost and complexity and it is disappointing MSPs are backing them.

“The introduction of a levy will see firms taxed twice for the parking places they provide for staff, on top of the business rates already paid on those spaces.”

Tory MSPs moved a string of amendments, aimed at ensuring that workplaces such as schools, colleges, police and fire stations, were exempted but these were rejected.

Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire councils have said they would not introduce a levy, arguing it would penalise those who lived in areas where car ownership is high.

The SNP leader of Moray Council, Graham Leadbitter, has ruled out the tax and Highland councillors have warned it could be difficult to implement in rural areas.

Already a subscriber? Sign in

[[title]]

[[text]]