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What's happening to the huge profits the Council makes from car parking, ask the Liberal Democrats?

August 16, 2019 6:06 PM

Disabled badgeAn FOI request from the Chronicle shows that Newcastle council's parking income is £25 million since 2017 - £11m a year and £3m in the financial year to date.

"These figures appear to be significantly higher than the recent RAC Foundation figures about Newcastle's net parking surplus, which suggested an annual £8 million profit by the council. Clearly the council incurs some annual expenditure in provision of car parking facilities, but I would be surprised if this amounted to £3 million, " commented Cllr Greg Stone, who speaks on transport matters for the Liberal Democrats in Newcastle.

"The big question is where this money goes to and what it is spent on. It has received in the region of £25 million in parking revenue since 2017. Despite repeated requests from the Liberal Democrats Opposition for a transparent account breakdown to be published, none has been forthcoming.

"Charges for parking in the city centre are justifiable on environmental grounds but any profits generated should be being redirected to measures to improve public transport and air quality. There is absolutely no evidence that this is happening.

"It is particularly reprehensible that the council has this year introduced charging for disabled permit holder parking in city parks and slashed the Shopmobility service for disabled drivers claiming financial pressures, when it is raking in millions in parking profits. These figures show they could afford to protect this vital lifeline many times over with the profits that they are making."