DOUGLAS Ross has “undermined himself” by publicly opposing plans to give local authorities the power to bring in workplace parking levies, the SNP have said.

The Scottish Government is looking to allow councils to charge workplaces to offer parking to employees, with a chance that those employees could in turn be asked to foot the bill.

Whether or not to implement the charges – which are ostensibly aimed at getting people to use public or active transport instead of driving – will be down to local councils.

The Scottish Tories have been vocal in their opposition to the idea, tweeting earlier this month: “The SNP's workplace parking levy is nothing more than a money-making scheme to compensate for their brutal cuts to local council funding.

“Scottish Conservative councillors will stand up for Scotland’s drivers by opposing the introduction of this unfair tax.”

However, party leader Ross has been accused of “blatant hypocrisy” after backing plans to charge 200 local authority workers for parking while he was a councillor in Moray.

SNP MSP Paul McLennan said: “This isn’t the first time that Douglas Ross has been completely undermined by Douglas Ross – you only have to look at his flip-flopping on whether law-breaking Boris Johnson is fit to be PM to realise that the Tories are interested in nothing more than opposition for opposition’s sake.

"This blatant hypocrisy simply shines a light on the reality that the Tory party has nothing positive to offer the people of Scotland.”

According to historic proceedings unearthed by the Daily Record, Ross first brought up the idea of charging council workers to park in response to public car parks beginning to charge – something he opposed.

“We are going to start charging other workers in Elgin soon, we should treat ourselves and council staff in the same way,” he said.

Ross also submitted a written question demanding progress on the introduction of “car parking charges in the staff and members car parks at Moray Council headquarters”.

A spokesperson for the Scottish Tories said: “Douglas never supported a workplace parking charge, but if one was to be introduced, he thought it should at least be fair. His proposal was aimed at including councillors who enjoyed free parking while imposing charges on others.”

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has previously accused the Scottish Tories of “deep hypocrisy” over their opposition to the plans.

READ MORE: Nicola Sturgeon slams Douglas Ross 'hypocrisy' on workplace parking charges

Speaking at FMQs in February, she said: “The workplace parking levy …gives a discretionary power to local authorities. They do not have to use it if they do not want to or if they do not think that it reflects their local circumstances.

“Of course, I would remind Douglas Ross that, in the Tories’ last local government manifesto – although I grant that this was before he was leader of the Scottish Conservatives – they said: ‘We need to empower councils and give them a renewed sense of meaning and purpose.’ “We are giving discretionary powers to local authorities and what do we have? The Scottish Conservatives opposing it and moaning about it.”

The SNP said the workplace parking levy is “one of the tools that councils can choose to use to raise vital funds and encourage more people to take the train, bus, walk or cycle to work”.