The Government wants to tax Aucklanders thousands of dollars a year just to use the motorway network, says Labour’s Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford.
“Officials estimate the average city commute is 11.8km. This means for the average Aucklander commuting five days a week, they would pay new congestion charges of between $185 and $2461 per year.
“National has allowed the gridlock on Auckland roads to get steadily worse over the past eight years, leaving Aucklanders to sweat it out daily in traffic jams. Now they want to make them pay for the pleasure.
“If National hadn’t abolished Auckland’s regional fuel tax in 2008, it would now be generating $150 million a year to reinvest in Auckland’s transport system. They have failed to make the investments needed to keep the city moving. Now they want to whack commuters with a massive tax for the privilege of using a road network that they’ve already paid for with their petrol taxes and road user charges.
“Without a massive improvement to the public transport system as a viable alternative to driving on the motorways at peak hours, it would be utterly unfair to charge people thousands of dollars extra a year to drive to work.
“Under Simon Bridges’ plan Aucklanders could get the worst of both worlds: endless gridlock, and an extra tax on top,” Phil Twyford says.