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    Government to charge £250 a year for 'parking tax' at work.

    Big BenWell, you soon may have to, according to the Daily Telegraph today the country's first 'workplace parking levy' will come into force in Nottingham in 2012 and is very likely to be adopted by other councils.Under this new scheme, any firm which needs 11 or more parking spaces for staff will be charged £250 a year for each space. The cost of these spaces would rise to £350 within two years! The worst part being that employers would be free to pass on this charge to employees. In Nottingham an estimated 40,000 people commute to work by car but some businesses have threatened to leave the area if this is introduced. In the entire country about 10million people commute to work every day. Councils in Milton Keynes, Exeter, Cambridge, Oxford as well as the Core Cities Group which represents Birmingham, Manchester, Bristol, Leeds, Liverpool, Newcastle and Sheffield have also expressed their interest in the new scheme.The Government have been exploring new ways to try and cut urban traffic, pollution and emissions as it was forced to back away from the pay-as-you-drive scheme due to public opposition but are now hoping to persuade cities to adopt a local scheme such as congestion charging.The AA have described this latest 'scheme' as a 'Tax on jobs. It is very unfair - discriminating against those employers who have parking spaces, which gets vehicles off the street. These tariffs apply around the clock, which is especially unfair on shift workers who rely on their cars because public transport is not available.'Nottingham believed it would raise £100 million over the next decade due to this levy, just under a fifth of the cost of a new urban tram scheme.The Tory transport spokesman, Theresa Villiers, has accused the Government of hitting businesses with new tax, 'At a time when jobs are under threat and businesses are under huge pressure, it is wrong to hit enterprise in Nottingham with a workplace parking levy,' she said. 'These new charges will be a real blow to the city and we oppose them.'No surprise that the move was welcomed by the environmental groups.The Campaigner for Better Transport has said, 'It has the added benefit of tackling unnecessary commuter journeys, one of the main causes of congestion,' he said. 'Failing to deal with the causes of congestion is simply not an option. We put forward the idea of workplace parking levies as a fairer way to raise money to invest in the future of local transport services. We are pleased that the people of Nottingham will be the first to benefit.'We all know my personal opinion on charging anything more for our vehicles as we already pay the highest tax duty in the world on petrol (currently 54p a litre), as well as road tax, so how do you feel about this new way to charge us? Do you think it is fair? Let us know your thoughts.(Thank you to imuttoo on Flickr for the use of this photo)

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