Drivers to pay up to £690 to park their cars outside their home

Owners of most ‘polluting’ vehicles will have to pay an annual fee

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Drivers in one London borough will soon be asked to pay a maximum fee of £690 to park their cars outside their home.

That is one of the measures of a new emission-based charging system which will be introduced by Merton Council to cut the use of the most polluting vehicles in the area.

Residents who own polluting vehicles, including petrol and diesel, will have to pay up to £540 every year.

The local authority said the annual visitor’s parking permit will increase to £690, the highest level of residential permit charge plus the additional Ultra Low Emission Zone levy.

It is believed the price will further reduce sales of this permit and therefore the use of vehicle types, which are contributing to air pollution.

In April 2017, Merton decided to implement a diesel levy to encourage drivers to move away from diesel vehicles.

Diesel vehicle ownership as a share of permits sold has reduced slightly in nearly all permit zones since the introduction of the diesel levy, the council estimates.

The scheme has already sparked outrage among local residents.

Merton Conservative said: “This new tax hike has come at the worst possible time for many residents across the borough.

“While many are facing job losses, stretched household budgets and an uncertain financial future due to the Covid19 pandemic, the Labour administration has chosen to put residents under the cosh with a series of new charges that fall on residents at the most financially difficult time many families will have experienced for decades.”

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