Motorists who drive to work can afford to pay a workplace parking levy if it is imposed, Glasgow’s council transport boss has said.

Anna Richardson, Convenor for Sustainability and Carbon Reduction, told MSPs at Holyrood the policy is a “relatively” small cost.

A number of MSPs at the Scottish Parliament Connectivity Committee raised concerns over plans to allow councils to levy a charge for parking spaces at work.

Ms Richardson, said it has not been decided yet if the council would use the power if it is granted.

Labour, SNP and Conservative MSPs raised questions about the plan

Jamie Greene, Conservative MSP, asked if it was fair to ask low earners and public sector workers to pay if they have no other travel choice.

READ MORE: Glasgow's workplace parking levy could affect 55,0000

Ms Richardson said there needs to be conversations around exemptions but added: “Generally those who drive to work are from middle to high earning households.

“Many people already pay to park in private car parks. “The principle of paying to travel to work already exists.”

She added: “It is a relatively small element of the cost of motoring, if the employer passes it on.”

Ms Richardson said the levy, if it comes into force, would be used to ease congestion

She said employers would be charged and it would be for them to decide whether or not to pass the cost on to staff, but she expected it would as that is how drivers would choose not to take their car to work.

She said: “We wouldn’t want to ban passing it on as that is what affects behaviour change.”

Ms Richardson said if the council was to implement a workplace parking levy WPL it would be as part of a wider transport strategy.

READ MORE: Councils should have powers over workplace parking charges, poll suggests

Pauline McNeill, Glasgow Labour MSP asked if a viable alternative of public transport should be in place before charging is introduced.

She said: “In parts of Glasgow you can’t get a bus. Thousands of Glaswegians have no choice other than to drive.”

She said this would be a tax on getting to work.

Ms Richardson said: “We know we have certain issues. We have low car ownership and the contradictory situation where some people need to drive as there’s no other option and others who rely on public transport.

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“At the moment we are working with transport operators to improve transport with or without a Workplace Parking Levy.”