Mayor Phil Goff has expressed his disappointment at the Government’s decision to rule out a regional fuel tax despite Auckland’s worsening traffic congestion.
"While the Government has the power to rule out a fuel tax, it has a duty to the people of Auckland to come back to Council with alternative solutions. Aucklanders are fed up with sitting in their cars on the motorway for hours at a time. It’s lost time for them and lost productivity for the city," said Phil Goff.
“People want the Government to work with Council to find an agreed solution. In my view a regional fuel tax is a fair, effective and efficient way of helping close the current $400m-a-year gap in transport funding.”
The Mayor said that putting the burden of resolving the transport funding deficit on to ratepayers would result in a rates increase of about 16 per cent next year.
“I don’t intend to do that. Ratepayers have been shouldering the burden for too long.
"We must find new revenue streams to fund our much-needed housing and transport infrastructure rather than continuing to load the cost of growth on ratepayers."
“I’m committed to working with the Government to develop new transport funding measures. If they remain adamantly opposed to a regional fuel tax, they need to urgently come up with another workable and sustainable solution,” he said.