Car parking charges for employees who drive to work have come one step closer after South Gloucestershire Council said it was considering imposing charges on workers using company car parks.
Three other west of England councils - Bath and North East Somerset, Bristol City and North Somerset - are also looking into the viability of such charges.
A spokesman for the South Gloucestershire Council confirmed that the charges were being considered as part of a range of initiatives to tackle congestion in Bristol.
The initiatives being considered make up a range of transport improvement schemes being considered by the four councils, which have just granted £675,000 by the Department of Transport.
The money will pay for additional technical and design work to further develop the transport schemes, as well as for further research to assess projected travel patterns and likely costs.
No decision has been taken on whether to introduce the company car park charges, which would essentially be a tax on employees who drive to work, or how much they will be.
However, a decision will be made by June.
If they are introduced, the charges for workplace parking would not be introduced until improvements have been made to the transport infrastructure, which would not be complete until 2013 at the earliest.
In the meantime, the four west of England authorities plan to submit a bid in June for additional funding under the DfT’s Transport Intitiave Fund.
The move by the four councils follows a similar initiative by Nottingham City Council, which is considering charging companies with car parks based in the Midlands city a £350 a year fee by 2014.
It is expected that if the charges come into force, they would be passed on to employees.