Councils make thousands from parking meters

July 5, 2016 | By | In Advice

Councils in the east of England have been revealed to be pocketing thousands of pounds from parking machines that do not issue change.

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BBC News contacted 50 councils across the east of England to enquire about the amount raised by the pay and display meters.

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Almost half of the councils contacted did not reveal a figure, with 21 claiming that they were unable to provide data. Three others said they did not use the pay and display machines.

The 26 councils that did respond to the BBC’s Freedom of Information request were found to have received more than half a million pounds in overpayments last year.

Of the £550,000 figure, the Borough Council of King's Lynn and West Norfolk was the worst offender, making £69,629, while Peterborough City Council gained £66,774.

A spokesman for Peterborough City Council defended the city, saying that alternative payment options were available at all of its car parks. They added: "Pay and display machines that do give change are significantly more expensive to purchase and maintain.

"The use of them would mean higher parking tariffs, and so the council has been able to keep tariffs low and competitive compared to other parking operators in the city."

However, the high figure amassed by Peterborough city council did not include overpayments from two of its car parks.

Councils that operated linear tariffs, which convert any overpayment to extra parking time, were found to have made much less. Cambridge City Council, for example, recorded £216 in overpayments, while Maldon District Council said that it had not received any money from overpayments last year.

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