Workplace car park tax a step closer to being introduced

Ettrick, Roxburgh and Berwickshire MSP Rachael Hamilton.
Ettrick, Roxburgh and Berwickshire MSP Rachael Hamilton.

Borderers who work in Edinburgh and drive to work could be hit by a planned car park tax despite opposition parties in the Scottish Parliament’s attempts to mitigate the impact.

The SNP and Greens on the Scottish Parliament’s Rural Economy and Connectivity Committee voted to include plans for a workplace parking levy in the Transport Bill; Labour and Conservative MSPs describing it as an attack on workers.

Borders MSP Rachael Hamilton said: “The SNP have teamed up with the Green Party to tax people to park at work, which is simply ludicrous and poorly-thought through given it could affect commuters from outside the city.

“I am glad that Scottish Borders Council agreed not to introduce the workplace car parking levy, however this cannot be said of all Scottish local authorities.

“If Edinburgh City Council adopts this outrageous measure, it will affect thousands of Borderers who commute to the city. The Scottish Conservatives have tried to stop this ridiculous form of taxation, which ultimately punishes people for simply turning up to work!”

South of Scotland Labour MSP Colin Smyth added: “This car park tax is an attack on workers that will hit the lowest paid hardest but will do little to tackle congestion.”

A Scottish Parliament’s Rural Economy and Connectivity Committee survey found a majority of people supported the tax, to help reduce air pollution and encourage commuters to switch from cars.