Park­ing fees hiked as road bud­gets are cut

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MORE than three out of five coun­cils in Eng­land have slashed their roads bud­get by an av­er­age of £500,000 this year.

Anal­y­sis of 363 lo­cal au­thor­i­ties by the AA found that 62 per cent cut their to­tal high­ways and trans­port spend­ing be­tween 2016 and 2017. The av­er­age for 2017/18 is £11.6 mil­lion com­pared with £12.1 mil­lion in the pre­vi­ous 12 months.

Although the av­er­age short­fall in road bud­gets was £500,000, some coun­cils saw their funds slashed by mil­lions. Barns­ley, Don­caster, Rother­ham and Sh­effield com­bined au­thor­ity had the big­gest cut in its al­lo­ca­tion – down by more than £40 mil­lion from last year (see ta­ble, right).

To off­set the cuts, more than 200 au­thor­i­ties plan to in­crease in­come by rais­ing fees for public park­ing and res­i­den­tial per­mits. West­min­ster Coun­cil ex­pects to raise an ad­di­tional £12 mil­lion in park­ing rev­enues this year.

AA pres­i­dent Ed­mund King said: “Driv­ers will be frus­trated that in many coun­cils the ex­tra in­come raised from charges won’t be rein­vested in im­prov­ing lo­cal roads.”

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