Parking Raises Over £30 Million For Council Coffers

An increase of 2% year on year - lower than the London average

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£30.2 million has been raised for the council coffers from Wandsworth's Controlled Parking Zones (CPZs), ranking the borough 5th in the UK according to the recent RAC Foundation report.

According to new figures from the RAC (pdf) money raised by Wandsworth council from parking has risen by 2% rise between 2014/15 to 2013/14 - the average rise for London boroughs was 4%. The top rank was again Westminster with an income of £74.3 million despite a drop of 8% on last year. Haringey saw the biggest increase in income (58%) and Newham income was increased by 30%.

The RAC Foundation say local authorities in London are making big profits from such charges and urge councils to reveal exactly where the surplus is going.

Steve Gooding, director of the RAC Foundation, said: "The financial sums involved in local authority parking are huge and the overall profits eye-watering. And once again the year-on-year direction of travel is upwards.

"It is unsurprising that London leads the way in making money. Its roads are most congested and the pressure on road space immense.

"The legal position is that parking charges are to be used as a tool for managing traffic. But with local government budgets under ever-greater pressure the temptation to see them as a fund-raiser must be intense.

"When a parking profit is made the law states that, essentially, the money can only be spent on transport and environment projects. We are simply asking that all councils publish annual reports to tell drivers exactly where this huge excess ends up."

A spokesperson for the Council told this website:
“Any surplus income must by law be spent on specified purposes, for instance improving highways and other transport-related issues. These include helping maintain roads and pavements and in particular funding the Freedom Pass scheme for older residents, as well as taxi-cards for disabled people and paying the travel costs of disabled children and those with special needs who need help getting to and from special schools.”

December 18, 2015