PLANS to put up parking permit charges by at least 15 per cent could turn Brighton into a “two-tier” city, a councillor has said.

Brighton and Hove City Council has proposed increasing the price of residents’ parking permits from £130 per year to £150.

It also plans to raise business permits by £50 to £400 and traders’ permits – for those such as builders who work all over the city – by £100 to £800.

Conservative transport spokesman Lee Wares said the Labour council’s plans would create a “two-tier city” where those who live in permit zones pay higher prices that others can avoid.

“Only those that live and work in controlled parking zones pay the price,” Cllr Wares said.

“This will be especially painful for those families on low incomes some of which will now be forced out of their cars whilst their better off neighbours will be able to keep theirs.

“Traders and businesses will be forced to pass on these extra costs to their customers.

“Those outside of controlled parking zones will keep their cars and just avoid the city, spending their hard-earned cash in neighbouring towns.”

With the city council raking in almost £27 million income from parking between March 2018 and March 2019, Cllr Wares said Labour was being “greedy” by increasing permits.

“Earlier in the year I suggested that because the council was making so much money from parking and fines it should consider helping key workers, traders and businesses by reducing permit charges,” he said.

“Regretfully, Labour are greedily going in the opposite direction by increasing permits costs by eight times the rate of inflation.

“Labour will claim these increases are part of their carbon neutrality strategy.

“But this is more of a cynical ploy to push the costs up to levels that they think will keep the cash rolling in.”

Councillors will decide whether to put up permit charges at a meeting of the policy and resources committee on January 23.

A spokesman for the council said the proposed prices would improve air quality, reduce congestion and promote public transport.

“Any surplus generated from parking charges after direct costs is spent on concessionary bus passes for older and disabled people, subsidising bus routes and transport improvement projects,” he said.

“The proposed figures are considered to be at a level which reflects the council’s traffic management objectives. The vast majority of visitor permits are proposed to remain at the same price.”