Over the next week there are a couple of important submissions that you should make on key transport initiatives:
- The draft Government Policy Statement – submissions close on May 2nd.
- The Regional Fuel Tax legislation – submissions close on April 20th.
Government Policy Statement
I talked about the draft GPS in more detail when it first came out. There are so many good things in here it’s hard to know where to start, but in your submission you could highlight support for:
- The much stronger focus on public transport, walking and cycling in the GPS’s strategic direction
- The new rapid transit activity class that finally provides some funding certainty for key projects light light-rail and busways.
- The increase in funding for walking and cycling
- The much stronger focus on safety, including a big move to adopting a Vision Zero approach
- Some of the details, like a shift to funding footpaths, a greater focus on creating vibrant places and much much more.
- The much more balanced funding allocation
Regional Fuel Tax Legislation
Nobody likes a new tax and the proposed Regional Fuel Tax comes with some legitimate concerns about the extent to which it may be regressive, hurting those on lower incomes more than those of higher incomes. But we’ve struggled to see any viable alternatives proposed and without this extra money essentially it will be impossible to make any progress in improving Auckland’s transport system. Therefore we do support the Regional Fuel Tax and you should as well.
The legislation simply enables a Council (only Auckland until 2021 but potentially other councils after that date) to apply for a Regional Fuel Tax, specifying the projects it intends to spend that money on. The details of “the proposal” are still to be revealed (presumably this is waiting for ATAP to be finalised and Auckland Transport to produce an RLTP that isn’t rubbish) and there will be further consultation (tired yet?) in the fairly near future. But still, I’m sure there will be plenty of opposition to the legislation (hopefully at least some of it constructive) so it can be useful to highlight how there really is no viable alternative to Regional Fuel Tax for now.
Make your submission on the Regional Fuel Tax legislation here.