Monday 28 November 2022 05:11 PM Fat cat parking bosses rake in DOUBLE the PMs £164K salary while slapping ... trends now
Fat cat bosses running private parking firms are drawing huge salaries while fining motorists at record rates, a Mail investigation reveals today.
Seven of the top firms generated a combined turnover of more than £650million and raked in more than £50million profit over the past three years despite lockdowns.
MPs and motoring groups said it was a 'licence to print money' and called for an inquiry into the astonishing figures.
A record 30,000 motorists a day are receiving tickets thanks to the operation of draconian regimes in private car parks, hospitals, garage forecourts, fast-food restaurants and supermarkets.
The number of tickets issued on private land has soared by 50 per cent in a year, meaning a motorist was caught out every three seconds from April to June.
Fat cat bosses running private parking firms are drawing huge salaries while fining motorists at record rates. Euro Car Parks owner Barry Tucker and his wife Rita, both 67 live in this £8million mansion (above) on one of London's most expensive streets
In the past three years accounts were available, Barry Tucker's (pictured) company had a turnover of £97.7million and profits of £15.6million
The parking giants are on track to demand up to £1billion in fines this year because the Government has withdrawn key parts of a long-awaited code of practice aimed at reining in 'cowboy' operators.
The firms do not own the land where cars are parked, but instead are awarded contracts by retailers, hospitals and landowners to impose charges. The maximum fine is £100, but this can quickly spiral into several hundred pounds, or even thousands, if the debt is unpaid.
Steve Gooding of the RAC Foundation said: 'No one doubts the need for private parking managers to make a return in order for their businesses to be viable, but where does the borderline come between reasonable profits and a licence to print money?
'While the combination of Covid and runaway inflation has put a financial squeeze on many companies, motorists feeling the pinch might be forgiven for questioning how the management of private parking is proving to be such a resiliently lucrative business for its senior directors.
'Might the sector's apparent enthusiasm for issuing huge numbers of private parking notices have anything to do with it?'
Greg Smith, a Tory member of the Commons transport committee, said of the Mail's findings: 'The figures are incredible. I think the committee ought to conduct a proper inquiry into this sector.
'From these new figures this is something parliament and the Government needs to take a much closer look at.
'Companies fleecing drivers, especially at public sector locations like hospitals, need to take a long hard look at their practices.
Simon Abraham (pictured with wife Louise) founded Creative Car Park Ltd and a string of other parking companies, many of which come under the umbrella of Civil Enforcement Ltd
Mr Abraham and his wife live in a £4million mansion (pictured) in an exclusive private road in north-west London
'Everyone accepts parking is at a premium, but the public deserve a parking system at places like hospitals that works with them and for them, not intentionally to make big bucks and rip them off. '
The Mail examined the accounts of some of the biggest names in the business, including Parking Eye, Apcoa and Euro Car Parks.
They clearly illustrate the huge sums involved – some bosses are making more than double the Prime Minister's salary of £164,080 a year.
Apcoa, which is owned by a company based in tax haven Luxembourg, paid its biggest earning executive, which it did not name, £372,000 last year. This came despite a loss overall on a £75.5million turnover. It describes itself as the biggest parking provider for hospitals, meaning it hands out tickets to nurses, patients and visitors.
Parking Eye chalked up nearly £28million profit over the past three years on a turnover of £118million.
Its two highest-paid directors, unidentified in their accounts, but believed to be Sian Wicks and Philip Boynes,