Small firms seek law change on workplace parking levy

Small businesses have demanded that the government scrap legislation which allows local authorities to charge firms that provide private parking for employees.

Last week the Department for Transport (DfT) finished consulting on proposals that would allow local authorities to introduce a workplace parking levy to raise extra cash.

Nottingham City Council is one of a number of authorities awaiting approval of plans to introduce the levy, which could see employers charged as much as £350 per space. The proposal is a strategy aimed at reducing city centre congestion.

HR professionals have previously told Personnel Today that the move would increase administrative burdens and could result in employee relations headaches.

The Forum of Private Business (FPB) pointed out that the tax burden would cause a major problem for small businesses which are struggling to survive the recession.

FPB chief executive Phil Orford said: “The government should be working hard to support businesses and relieve this burden, not add to it.

“Some employees have no choice but to drive to work, which means that getting rid of parking is simply not an option for most small businesses.”

The parking levy would be introduced under the Transport Act 2000, which gives councils the power to introduce workplace parking levy schemes.

But Orford said the plans would add pressure to Britain’s already struggling high-street. “The imposition of steep parking charges is a huge issue for high street retailers, which are experiencing a significant decline in trade.”

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