Today we've announced our exciting and progressive new 10-year plan for transport, unlocking the potential of our cities and regions and making strides forward for road safety.
Let's address some of the common questions we've been hearing about our plan...
What’s in the plan?
In a nutshell, our plan places major emphasis on three main areas: road safety, regional transport, and urban traffic congestion.
We’re doubling how much is going into road safety, and increasing road police by 14%.
We’re also doubling how much is invested in roads in the regions, and including more funding for much-overdue rail upgrades and maintenance.
And we’re getting our cities moving, with a number of road projects. We’re also investing in making it easier and safer to walk, cycle or use public transport.
How are we funding this?
The previous Government planned to put a whole lot of money into just a handful of roads.
We’re scrapping this idea. Instead of focusing on just a few roads, we’re spreading out our investment across the country, making key, strategic improvements to existing roads, and investing in public transport and road safety.
We're also increasing fuel excise to fund this plan.
National has regularly criticised this increase as if it is some kind of "new tax".
The reality, however, is that fuel excise increases are actually routine in government.
In fact, National increased fuel excise seven times over their nine years. A total of 17 cents a litre.
Ultimately, it’s business as usual – and certainly not a “new tax.”
In addition to the excise, the New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) will also increase their share of costs for important regional projects – which means councils can get more investment in their regions without more asking more of ratepayers.
Will the fuel excise increase affect poor people more than wealthy people?
Quite the opposite.
The numbers show that the lowest-income families will be paying only a half or even a third as much as those on the highest incomes.
There are a few reasons why people in lower deciles actually spend less on fuel – including using public transport more.
We’re funding major improvements to public transport to make leaving the car at home an even easier option.
How much will it cost you?
The average family will pay only about 83 cents extra a week from the excise increase on October 1.
The lowest income families will pay 40c a week.
In Auckland, Auckland Council will charge motorists a regional fuel tax to fund much-needed development in the city. The average Auckland family will pay $3.80 more this year and $5.77 more in 2020. The lowest income households in Auckland will pay $2.40 more in 2018 and $3.64 in 2020.
Click here for a more detailed run-down on what's planned for transport over the next ten years.