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Phil Twyford has opened the floodgates to councils up and down the country wanting to hike taxes on motorists, proving his claims the regional fuel tax will be confined to Auckland are false, National’s Transport spokesperson Jami-Lee Ross says.

"At the same time as announcing nationwide fuel taxes will increase by up to 12 cents, the Transport Minister was writing his regional fuel tax bill with the clear intent of allowing a second round of fuel tax hikes to be rolled out on hard working New Zealanders nationwide.

“We knew Wellington, Christchurch and Tauranga councils had asked the Government for the new tax and now media have confirmed that so have 11 others – and it’ll be available to them in a few short years.

“Phil Twyford sold his tax as an Auckland issue, but all along has denied the law he's passing will see tax hikes in other areas in a few short years.

“And there’s not going to be a new debate in Parliament when all these other councils want to impose the new tax, they’ll just need to ask Twyford nicely. If elected, National will cancel the regional fuel tax.

"Local Government has had a problem with increasing spending for many years. It seems Labour's solution isn't to reign them in, but to find more ways for councils to take more money from taxpayers.

“This is further proof this Government can’t be trusted.

"If Labour wasn’t tipping $5 billion out of roading projects to fund Auckland trams, they would have the money available to assist councils with transport funding across the country.”

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