St Edmundsbury Council has explained how it spends the money raised through its car parks after a study showed it has a surplus of more £2.4m from its car parking charges.
The study by the RAC Foundation looked at parking operations revenue outturn for all English councils in 2012-13 (excluding capital costs), money raised through both on and off street parking charges.
It shows that in 2012-13 St Edmundsbury Council had a surplus of £2,476,000, putting it in 59th place (out of more than 350) in the table for authorities according to how much surplus they have from car parking charges.
A council spokesman said: “St Edmundsbury Borough Council uses car parking charges from its off street parking to make sure we can improve our car parks, create new facilities, ensure efficient management of the flow of traffic on our streets, provide safe places for vehicles and a proper balance between short and long stay places so there are spaces when and where people need them.
“In recent years, for example, we have increased car parking availability in Haverhill through investing in the Cleales car park, provided a new underground car park in Bury St Edmunds, and all our car parks have been recognised for their safety and other features through the award of Park Marks.
“In setting our charges we have also carried out extensive consultation, including with local businesses, which has led to initiatives such as free parking at various times during the week.”
The same RAC study shows Braintree District Council has a surplus of £451,000 (210th on the list), South Cambridgeshire District Council is on zero (295th) and Uttlesford District Council £510,000 (201st).