Business owners with electric vehicles have seen the price of their traders parking permits skyrocket by 50 per cent.

The bracket for electric vehicles has been scrapped and drivers must now purchase a traders permit in the same bracket as low-emission cars.

A 12-month permit for the lowest emission vehicles now costs £602.25.

One driver who bought their electric vehicle permit in May, before the changes, had to pay £397. Brighton and Hove City Council implemented the changes in July this year.

The man slammed the council and said it should be incentivising people to make the switch to electric vehicles.

The Argus: Traders can park in paid parking bays, shared use bays and permit bays until 5pmTraders can park in paid parking bays, shared use bays and permit bays until 5pm

He said: “I can park illegally and get 17 parking tickets a year and pay less if I wanted. It is not only the council, it is the government giving you an incentive which is not happening.

“The increase is a lot to pay. I think a lot of people will be surprised that the council has dropped this incentive for electric vehicles.

“You pay a premium for an electric vehicle, about £10,000 more. There were benefits before to buying an electric vehicle, one of the factors was that I would only pay a certain amount in Brighton. Now I can park like an idiot if I want to and get parking tickets and get ahead.

“The council does not want that. The council are winning because I park two times a week in the city.


“It is not value for money anymore. Getting a parking space in Brighton is so hard and the car parks are more expensive. If people need to stay half an hour, some people will risk parking somewhere and not pay.”

Bill Murray, founder of the London Brighton Paris EV rally, said: "In a time where we are supposed to be encouraging the adoption of EV ownership, EV easing and salary sacrifice schemes this is the worst setback drivers could have.

"To not offer affordable and accessible rates for electric vehicles in a city perceived to be one of the best in the UK in employing sustainable practices is bonkers. To put the prices up is absolutely deplorable. What on earth is going on here?"

The Argus: Traders with electric vehicles paid £200 less a year before the change in JulyTraders with electric vehicles paid £200 less a year before the change in July (Image: Sussex News and Pictures)

Traders can park in paid parking bays, shared-use bays and permit bays until 5pm.

There has previously been anger at the year-on-year price rises as well as traders not being able to park beyond 5pm.

A council spokesman said: “Due to continuing cuts in the overall level of funding the council receives from the government we had to make some very difficult decisions in order to balance our budget for 2023-24.

“The decision to reduce the parking permit discount traders get for low-emission vehicles from 50 per cent to 25 per cent was confirmed at our budget council meeting in February.

“This meant an increase in the overall price of the trader permits for electric vehicles as it was included within the low emission band. We implemented these changes in late July.

“We’re really sorry that our residents and traders have been affected in this way.”

The council's budget is predicted to have a funding gap of £25.3 million for the financial year 2024/25, according to its own forecasts.

How much do trader parking permits cost?

A trader parking permit for a low emission vehicle is £105.90 for one month, £211.50 for three months or £602.25 for a year.

A standard emission vehicle costs £141 for one month, £281.70 for three months and £803 for a year.

A high-emission vehicle is £245.70 for one month, £491.40 for three months and £1,401.60 for a year.

A low-emission vehicle (not a diesel vehicle) that produces 110g/km or less CO2 emissions.

Standard emission is defined as petrol vehicles between 111g/km to 165g/km CO2 emissions or a diesel vehicle producing up to 165g/km CO2 emissions.

High emission is defined as any vehicle that produces 166g/km or more CO2 emissions.