A COUNCIL’S car parks made nearly half a million pounds in 2012/13, according to figures from the RAC Foundation.

A “profit” of £461,000 was earned by Monmouthshire County Council from parking charges from an income of £1.1 million, although the figure was down by 36 per cent on the year before.

The RAC said Welsh councils had generated £8.7m in parking surpluses, with Cardiff having the biggest surplus at £2.6m.

Caerphilly council generated £162,000 from an income of £659,000 – down by 30 per cent over the same period of time.

Newport generated an income of £660,000 – but its parking services cost £206,000 more than that.

In Blaenau Gwent, parking services cost £311,000, while in Torfaen parking services cost £39,000. Only £7,000 was generated in income in the authority.

Neither of the authorities charge for parking in council run car parks.

Professor Stephen Glaister, RAC Foundation director, said: “Parking must always be about managing congestion, not raising money and we would recommend that all local authorities produce an annual parking report detailing their parking strategy.”

A Monmouthshire council spokesman said: “The figure provided is the gross income over and above the cost of operating the service. In Monmouthshire this money is accounted for in the authority’s overall revenue budget.

“But it is reinvested legitimately in associated traffic/transport services.”