Saturday, 28 January 2006

Tolling Aucklanders

NZPA: Auckland Mayor Dick Hubbard, Waitakere Mayor Bob Harvey and Manukau Mayor Sir Barry Curtis have resolved to lobby the Government for permission to toll motorists on existing roads to help deal with a potential $2.3 billion shortfall on Auckland's 10-year transport plan...

SCOOP: Michael Barnett, chairman of the Auckland Business Forum, said that ... the Forum’s support for tolls is subject to the Government undertaking to review and address areas of unfairness and inequality in the current road pricing system...

Here's two views on this from two libertarians. "The call by the Mayors in Auckland to toll existing roads is a healthy one," says LibertyScott. Toll 'em, and then privatise 'em, says he. Stuff off, says Susan the Libertarian (I paraphrase just a little). "We'll end up paying twice for bugger all improvement."

So who's right?

Links: Tolls on Auckland roads 'the wrong approach' - NZPA
Any delay to motorway building unacceptable - Auckland Business Forum
Toll existing Auckland roads? - LibertyScott
Michael Barnett is dreaming - Susan the Libertarian


  1. This is not tolling for new roads, its tolling of existing roads which have already been paid for.

    Let's remember that Auckland has been promised money for roads from

    1) Dick Hubbards "congestion-buster" rates increase of last year
    2) Extra fuel taxes imposed by Labour last year
    3)Extra money in the budget surpluses allocated to roading projects
    4) the general tax take with money allocated in greater proportion to Auckland.

    So why bring in a 5th charge? Seems excessive to me. Had we not had an increase in petrol tax and/or greater allocation for Auckland roads either from surpluses or the existing tax take, Hubbard and the other two Mayors might have a point.

  2. Aaron you're right that there is no need for more money for roads, but the problem is that the roads are managed by socialist means - when everyone wants to travel at once queuing happens, and you pay the same if the roads are empty than when they are full.

    Auckland councils are not competent to do this though, and will use it to fleece the public. The roads need to be out of political hands.

  3. Correct, Scott. Sell them and toll them.

    But do not tax me twice via the existing petrol/roading taxes AND subsequent tolls.


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