Transport Minister Phil Twyford’s refusal to force Auckland Council to control its loose spending means New Zealanders are having to pay hundreds of dollars more for petrol, National’s Transport spokesperson Jami Lee Ross says.
“Mr Twyford’s claim that two new fuel taxes are needed to fund the city’s transport projects is wrong and an unnecessary raid on the back pockets of hard working Aucklanders.
“If he simply held Auckland Mayor Phil Goff to his election promise to find three to six per cent of savings across Auckland Council’s annual budget that would free up the same amount of money the regional fuel tax will raise, making the taxes unnecessary.
“But Mr Twyford is not interested in any solution that doesn’t involve raising taxes so he’s forcing Aucklanders to pay the price – as much as $15 more every time they fill up.
“National was committed to living within our means and to funding important projects like Penlink, Mill Road, the Eastern Busway, and the City Rail Link without new taxes.
“We were able to invest record amounts in infrastructure as a result of a growing economy, careful management of the Government’s books and refusing to allow Auckland Council to subsidise its loose spending with new taxes – all of which this Government has abandoned.
“Phil Twyford needs to stop treating New Zealanders like an ATM, axe his fuel taxes which will drive the price of fuel up in Auckland by up to 25 cents a litre and get on with the job of improving the lives of New Zealanders without forcing them to pay through the nose.”