Petrol Tax

December 20th, 2012 at 3:19 pm by David Farrar

should not be used to fund the Government’s general spending. Most people would agree on that. For several decades was a great revenue earner for the Government. It was impossible to avoid, had low compliance costs and only four companies had to pay it.

National in the late 90s changed this. Previously almost half the petrol tax went into the consolidated fund. It then made a decision to dedicate it to the land fund. What this means is that petrol tax is an imperfect form of user pays.

Again I think most would agree those who use the roads should pay for them. Why should someone who works from home pay the same towards road maintenance as someone who spends four hours a day driving on them?

In a perfect world we would have GPS chips that monitor every road we drive on, how congested it is, is it peak time etc and we’d get charged directly for our road use. However that technology is a wee way off, and there are huge privacy issues around that. So we have petrol tax as an imperfect but pretty good rough system of user pays.

This then leads to two issues around petrol tax. The first is whether it is set at the right level to fund the various land transport projects, or are they making a profit from it?

I asked for a copy cashflows for the National Land Transport Fund for the the last three years.  The net revenue from petrol tax, road user charges and vehicle registration fees was $2.51b, $2.63b and $2.69b in the last three years. The expenditure or distributions were $2.93b, $3.03b and $2.67b. This means that spending was greater than income by $420m, $400m and $20m surplus last year. So over the last three years $800m deficit.

That makes it clear to me that the Government is not using petrol tax to fund non-transport projects. If transport expenditure is needed, of course motorists should pay for it. I actually have a view that the petrol tax level should not be set by Government at a set level, but automatically increase or decrease to fund all transport projects that have a positive business case.

Now the second issue is what transport projects are funded from the land transport fund. The Greenies want nothing spent on roads, and it all spent on rail. There;’s never been a road they have supported. Some think there should be no subsidy for – that passenger fares should pay for , not road users.

I think the current mix of both road and public transport is pretty good. The NLTP plan has $12.3b invested in land transport of which $1.7b is for public transport. Some people would have you think there is little funding of public transport.

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69 Responses to “Petrol Tax”

  1. Manolo (14,166 comments) says:

    Double Dipton English would have us believe this was not done to achieve the promised surplus.
    It goes to show the little difference between Labour and Labour lite when comes to extract money from people.

    But hey, didn’t Key promised to lower taxes in 2008? The lying saga continues unabated.

    [DPF: Did you miss the tax cuts in 2009? And if you read the links provided, it was made clear when the NLTF was released a few months ago that petrol tax would increase – and so it should. Why should we fund roads out of income tax?]

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  2. toad (3,674 comments) says:

    …but automatically increase or decrease to fund all transport projects that have a positive business case.

    Main problem here is that several of the roading projects Brownlee proposes to fund from it do not have a positive business case.

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  3. hinamanu (1,068 comments) says:

    Obviously then, no NZ govt in the Lab/Nat paradigm is going to prove collusion and price fixing between oil companies

    Fortunately though there is good news on the banking front

    In this episode, Max Keiser and Stacy Herbert look at HSBC being fined rather than criminally charged in order to avoid destabilizing the system, while JP Morgan and others are being sued for about a trillion in bad mortgages investors were duped into buying. They also look at “1001” under which bankers who lied to the federal housing authorities could be criminally tried for lying to a federal official. In the second half, Max Keiser talks to Kyra Maya Phillips of MisfitEconomy.com about democracy aboard pirate ships of the 18th century on which No Plunder, No Pay was the name of the game and innovation happened on the fringe. Max proposes banksters walk the plank in a specially built platform in Trafalgar Square.

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  4. david c (192 comments) says:

    Isn’t this a regressive tax though? Won’t it unfairly hurt poorer families?

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  5. tvb (4,553 comments) says:

    It is a reasonably efficient tax. Except I want to see RUC dropped on diesel for the private motorist and something be done about cyclists and others who use the highway system. Expect it for free especially cyclists.

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  6. Manolo (14,166 comments) says:

    hinamanu, when will you reveal your true trivialrev identity?

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  7. Pete George (23,793 comments) says:

    Won’t it unfairly hurt poorer families?

    Probably not. Poorer families are more likely to not have to travel to work, or not have a car, or at least use alternative transport or walk as much as they can to keep fuel costs down. And they consume less so will pay less of the extra fuel charges in goods purchased.

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  8. simonway (387 comments) says:

    There’s never been a road they have supported.

    Pants on fire, dpf. They have repeatedly advocated the CBT’s Operation Lifesaver as an alternative to the full Puhoi-Wellsford project. Your claim here is flat-out not true. The Greens are on record supporting funding for a piece of road construction.

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  9. Auberon (779 comments) says:

    And which ones would they be Toad? And be honest.

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  10. Rick Rowling (816 comments) says:

    It’s still pretty imperfect given that most roads driven on are funded by local rates, not NZTA.

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  11. The Scorned (719 comments) says:

    All taxes hurt the poorest the most…and virtually all regulations too.

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  12. OneTrack (3,350 comments) says:

    “simonway (259) Says:
    December 20th, 2012 at 3:41 pm

    Your claim here is flat-out not true. The Greens are on record supporting funding for a piece of road construction”

    Stretching it a bit there simon. Lifesaver is simply patching up an existing road INSTEAD of building a new road. I couldn’t see much support either – just a few press releases and questions in the house. No policy position. When they get in in 2014, do you really think they will continue with either option. Or will they just forget about both projects.

    DPFs (safe) assertion remains – the Greens are against roads.

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  13. Key is our man (899 comments) says:

    Simply ignore anything the Greens say and get on with life. If you listen to the Greens, we will not have any industry, any road, any activity. Simply drink coconut water, eat fish and green grass and sit around and do nothing. Only when the Greens go under 5%, we will go forward as a Nation.

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  14. hmmokrightitis (1,596 comments) says:

    tvb, your anti cyclist views are more holey than the pope. Many cyclists own cars, and therefore contribute. The more bikes, the fewer cars. The footprint bikes take up compared to even the smallest car is miniscule, and the pollution factor zero. And dont forget the health benefits.

    Its a pathetic argument thats been tried many times, and it still smells like 10 day old fish. Hell, in my family of 5 we have two late model cars, a bike each for the missus and the lids, and I have 5 bikes.

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  15. RRM (10,099 comments) says:

    I asked for a copy cashflows for the National Land Transport Fund for the the last three years. The net revenue from petrol tax, road user charges and vehicle registration fees was $2.51b, $2.63b and $2.69b in the last three years. The expenditure or distributions were $2.93b, $3.03b and $2.67b. This means that spending was greater than income by $420m, $400m and $20m surplus last year. So over the last three years $800m deficit.

    That makes it clear to me that the Government is not using petrol tax to fund non-transport projects.

    Thanks for digging this up DPF.

    For years I have been witnessing bang-head-against-brick-wall debates of the form “The bloody government uses petrol tax for everything except roads…” and haven’t really known where to look to see if that’s is actually the case or not.

    Clearly it’s not, and on average other taxation has been subsidising roads by hundreds of millions of dollars every year.
    Noted… :-)

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  16. OneTrack (3,350 comments) says:

    “hmmokrightitis (974) Says:
    December 20th, 2012 at 3:59 pm
    tvb, your anti cyclist views are more holey(sic) than the pope. Many cyclists own cars, and therefore contribute”

    And many cyclists don’t own cars, and therefore don’t contribute at all. Does that also mean you only have to pay registration on one of your cars, as you are already contributing?

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  17. Mike Wilkinson (72 comments) says:

    Bring on the development of an economic electric car. That would be something that would force the Government to come up with a new way to fund roads.

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  18. flipper (4,328 comments) says:

    Actually petrol taxes were always allocated to and used (starting with Goosman, under Holyoake?) by the National Roads Board. About the time that the economy hit the wall, Muldoon pinched it (when Allen was Min of Works, from memory) and sent it to the Consolidated Fund. Labour under Kirk, Watt and Rowling, left it there.
    The return to a dedicated use.tax is to be applauded.

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  19. Longknives (4,953 comments) says:

    I personally think it’s a bit rough that Joe Average can barely afford to put gas in his car simply because Chris ‘MP of the year’ Finlayson needs more taxpayer cash to throw at his Maori activist mates…

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  20. thedavincimode (6,890 comments) says:

    DPFs (safe) assertion remains – the Greens are against roads.

    Yes, actually they prefer air travel – particularly the international variety.

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  21. Viking2 (11,672 comments) says:

    Except that you have ignored tha\e fact that RATEPAYERS pay a huge amount of money to bus companies as well. As a road user I see no reason at all why I should subsidize buses via my rates.

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  22. Manolo (14,166 comments) says:

    DPF: Did you miss the tax cuts in 2009?

    No, I didn’t. Neither I missed the GST increase from 12.5 to 15% and the brand new ETS tax.
    Long live Labour lite…..not.

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  23. BlairM (2,340 comments) says:

    The petrol tax is a disgrace. What other product has a tax on it which literally doubles the price? And yes, it is utterly regressive – it disproportionately effects the poor, and especially the working poor, who have to commute every day.

    Here in America I pay $3/gallon for “gas”, and San Antonio, which is about the same size as Auckland, has about three times the motorways. Texas seems to have no problem funding roads out of property and sales taxes.

    Why should we fund roads out of income tax?

    Because it is less of a burden on those struggling to get ahead. A simple poll tax on everybody might be “fairer”, but the petrol tax is as close to a poll tax as NZ gets, and it has a chilling effect on social mobility.

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  24. campit (467 comments) says:

    1) actually I think it was Labour that hypothecated petrol tax
    2) what matters most with any tax and spend policy is that the money is well spent. Transmission Gully, Puhoi Wellsford and the RoNS projects are examples where this is not the case.
    3) There have been two audits recently where the claimed economic benefits have not been realised. (One is here.
    4) The share of petrol tax for public transport infrastructure has been slashed by National to just 0.8% of the budget. Off memory the RoNS projects are up around 40% of the budget. National has not committed to any significant new public transport infrastructure projects since coming to power.
    5) vehicle km travelled has been flat or declining for a number of years. There is no rational reason to be increasing the capacity of the state highway network.
    6) There is no linkage between economic growth and the capacity of the state highway network. Increasing capacity does not cause economic growth.

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  25. Steve (North Shore) (4,536 comments) says:

    Road Lice should pay to use the road. The fact that some also have cars is irrelevent, that Tax is for your car, not your bike.
    I have 3 trailers, Garden, Boat and Camper. I pay 3 registrations, yet I can only tow one trailer. We also have 2 vehicles, so that is 5 regos, 5 WOF and 2 Vehicles pay petrol/road tax.

    The Road Lice pay fucking nothing for using the roads that are funded by vehicle owners.

    tvb, your anti cyclist views are more holey than the pope. Many cyclists own cars, and therefore contribute.

    Cyclists do not contribute full fucking stop hmmokrightitis, they are bludgers – road lice

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  26. campit (467 comments) says:

    The Road Lice pay fucking nothing for using the roads that are funded by vehicle owners.

    If you are referring to cyclists, then cyclists pay rates or come from families that pay rates. About 30-40% of your rates is spent on roading.

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  27. mikenmild (12,340 comments) says:

    I’d admire your efforts campit, but I think you have come to the wrong place with your rationality and fact-based approach.

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  28. ZenTiger (375 comments) says:

    In a perfect world we would have GPS chips that monitor every road we drive on,

    Perfect?

    Will the government charge oxygen by lung capacity?

    User pays in one area whilst other areas get a free ride do not necessarily make for a fairer system, and that’s setting aside the implicit control we give to the government to monitor such things.

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  29. Steve (North Shore) (4,536 comments) says:

    @ campit
    “If you are referring to cyclists, then cyclists pay rates or come from families that pay rates. About 30-40% of your rates is spent on roading.”
    Road Lice pay for nothing. I am a Ratepayer and I detest paying RATES for the fucking Orchestra, Museum, the mad hat people walking Queen St telling you the best places to go. And I am pissed of why the motorist has to pay for cycle lanes
    ROAD LICE are bludgers

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  30. Joseph Carpenter (214 comments) says:

    Campit is talking complete crap, no urban local authority spends 30-40% on roads. Even rural authorities which have a high ratio of roads to other infrastructure/ratepayers rarely spend that much. As an example Auckland City Council which is our largest local authority by far spent only 3.6% of total actual spending for 2012 on roading-operational expenditure and 7.1% on roading-capital – and that capital spending is historically high and includes several one-off’s like revaluations and intergroup transfers particularly to Transport Auckland.

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  31. Steve (North Shore) (4,536 comments) says:

    Are you telling lies campit?
    See JC above

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  32. Johnboy (17,015 comments) says:

    If increasing the fuel tax get’s poor trash off the road and onto public transport, hence clearing the congestion caused by second-hand rice-burners and their incompetent pilots, for those of us who can really afford a decent set of wheels I see nothing wrong with it.

    Make it 90 cents increase/year! :)

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  33. mikenmild (12,340 comments) says:

    With all that dosh Johnboy, there’ll be a four-lane tunnel through to Wainui in no time, with the buses and cyclists restricted to the hill road.

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  34. Johnboy (17,015 comments) says:

    I’d put them through the tunnel hence using the diesel fumes from the buses to dispose of the cyclists and leaving the hill as a test track for those of us who can handle it’s nuance’s, but raise the minimum speed on the hill to 130K! :)

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  35. mikenmild (12,340 comments) says:

    On which side of the hill would the mortuary be located?

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  36. Johnboy (17,015 comments) says:

    Why the side with the biggest drop-off of course Milkey!

    Are you thick or something? :)

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  37. mikenmild (12,340 comments) says:

    I’m just a simple Hutt boy, possibly lacking in the sophistication and erudition so common over the hill.

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  38. nasska (12,095 comments) says:

    This could keep the road lice numbers down:

    Ref: http://imgur.com/gallery/cxtwz

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  39. Johnboy (17,015 comments) says:

    If you have never swerved your 95 Falcoon over the hill in rush hour, using all three (Used to be five before the barrier) lanes, frightening the shit out of the law-abiding you have never lived as a Martian has Milky

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  40. mikenmild (12,340 comments) says:

    Perhaps we’d be better off if there was no road access at all.

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  41. Michael (913 comments) says:

    If we charge cyclists a road user charge then it wouldn’t be worth collecting. A 100kg of cycle and rider will not wear out the road for thousands of years. Check out the on-road cycle lanes and compare the wear to the where the cars, buses and trucks go.

    And if you charge cyclists, then you have to open all the same roads to them that other vehicles are charged for – might slow down traffic on the Harbour Bridge as it is a bit steep going up!

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  42. Johnboy (17,015 comments) says:

    For many of the lovely ladies I spot at Wainui mall I would have to agree that a footpath over the hill would do them a world of good Milkey! :)

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  43. krazykiwi (8,040 comments) says:

    The Road Lice pay fucking nothing for using the roads that are funded by vehicle owners.

    Yeah, I thought the same thing as I filled my boat, and my lawmower with petrol. And those runners around the Miramar peninsular – selfish bastards for not paying a road tax. And the mums walking their kids. Incredible. You angry motorists are right. Get out there and show off your preschool-intelect inspired rage. Oh… you already do.

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  44. Johnboy (17,015 comments) says:

    Bastards that fill their boat with something other than wind and don’t push their lawnmowers are just…….utter bastards! :)

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  45. UglyTruth (4,554 comments) says:

    Steve (North Shore) (3,307) Says:
    December 20th, 2012 at 7:03 pm

    Cyclists do not contribute full fucking stop hmmokrightitis, they are bludgers – road lice

    Ordinary use of a public road is a common law right. The fact that the system injures that right through driver licencing is just one example of its dishonour.

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  46. swan (665 comments) says:

    “In a perfect world we would have GPS chips that monitor every road we drive on, how congested it is, is it peak time etc and we’d get charged directly for our road use. However that technology is a wee way off…”

    Please explain what technology would be required for GPS based road pricing that does not currently exist?? You do realise that with E-Roads we already have this sort of technology operating in NZ right?

    I think it is more to do with lazy politicians that we are not moving to a proper user pays system.

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  47. campit (467 comments) says:

    Campit is talking complete crap, no urban local authority spends 30-40% on roads.

    There’s no right answer to this – it depends which way you look at it and I don’t think the Councils themselves are consistent with how this is accounted for.

    For instance, in Auckland 31% of “your rates” is spent on “transport”, according to this pie chart. Presumably transport also includes public transport services though and possibly carparking as well – there is no definition of what “transport” is.

    If you want to look at what Councils spend on transport then you have to dive into the financial reports. Bear in mind that rates ($1.4bn annually) in Auckland are just 53% of revenue, and also that Councils borrow money for some projects as well. Some transport expenditure is 50% funded NZTA (fuel taxes and RUC) too, but NZTA contributions to all councils are being tightened as a result of the diversion of funds to the RoNS. For instance in 2013, Auckland council plans to spend $22m on footpaths, $385m on roads (that’s opex) and $43 and $400m respectively on capex. General rates are paying for $248m of the road and foot path opex, while a $234m of the capex is funded through borrowing.

    So it becomes a bit difficult to match rates income to transport expenditure accurately.

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  48. nasska (12,095 comments) says:

    swan

    That GPS based ‘proper user pays system’ would also store information of everywhere you went & when you did it. The system would give ‘big government’ or anyone who chooses to buy or steal the information incredible knowledge of your activities.

    I for one would be inclined to line up with a pitchfork outside parliament should our already nosey leaders vote to realise their visions of 1984.

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  49. swan (665 comments) says:

    “That GPS based ‘proper user pays system’ would also store information of everywhere you went & when you did it. The system would give ‘big government’ or anyone who chooses to buy or steal the information incredible knowledge of your activities.”

    I take it you dont use the banking system or own a cellphone or use the internet (hang on…) given your paranoia? What makes you think a secure system couldn’t be developed?

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  50. nasska (12,095 comments) says:

    swan

    Easy…..I use landline DSL only, pay by cash or cheque & only turn on the cellphone if I want to use it.

    In any case how can any information system be made so secure as to be safe from the prying eyes of those who own it?

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  51. swan (665 comments) says:

    nasska,

    That argument can be made about the State in general though. The State can do whatever it wants to you. It could follow you around, harass you, threaten you, imprison you, torture you, kill you. The fact it doesnt is because it sees no need to, because of the political culture in NZ, because of the institutions of the state in NZ etc. A GPS based road pricing system would not affect any of this.

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  52. nasska (12,095 comments) says:

    swan

    You have a far better opinion of our political & bureaucratic masters than I.

    You realise that your speed can be monitored & probably your driving habits. Therefore expect to sign a waver allowing your insurance company access to all information as a condition of your policy. Expect many tickets for speeding when you never dreamt you were.

    You’re advocating something with far greater implications than micromanaging road user charges.

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  53. BlairM (2,340 comments) says:

    Johnboy would love North Korea, where poor people are forbidden to own cars, and if you are high up in the party you can drive as fast as you like. How about that?

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  54. toad (3,674 comments) says:

    @Longknives 5:23 pm

    I personally think it’s a bit rough that Joe Average can barely afford to put gas in his car simply because Chris ‘MP of the year’ Finlayson needs more taxpayer cash to throw at his Maori activist mates…

    Good to see the racist right (exemplified by you) having an argument with the economic right (exemplified by DPF) here.

    I enjoy seeing the right divided.

    And for the record, I would support the Nats’ petrol tax increase if the revenue raised were going into sustainable transport options.

    But it is not.

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  55. Deane Jessep (69 comments) says:

    I’d like to see a differential based on traffic movements that have to be made and provide some economic benefit and frivolous trips that cause pointless congestion. Also road users tax is now an imperfect measure of commercial use, so that needs to be fixed. Nirvana would be using the same algorithms used in modern mobile data networks that are capable of offering savings if you travel off peak… nothing like incentives to change behavior.

    But in practical terms the above is too hard to change/measure/enforce without the GPS based system everyone is so scared of so for now petrol tax it is.

    Not to say the tech is not already there, it is, it just needs the balls to put it in place.

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  56. Left Right and Centre (3,007 comments) says:

    david c says:

    *Isn’t this a regressive tax though? Won’t it unfairly hurt poorer families?*

    Pete George replies:

    1) *Probably not.* Really?

    2) *Poorer families are more likely to not have to travel to work,* bullshit

    *or not have a car,* NZ= car culture, rich or poor = bullshit. Poor folks have cars and NZ is the least public transport friendly first world country save for maybe America. NZ and US are right at home when it come to private vehicle ownership. Rich or poor almost every prick has one. Some fuckin families have a whole car yard.

    *or at least use alternative transport or walk as much as they can to keep fuel costs down.* Try walking to work… it’s not the 1870’s. Walk as much as they can to keep fuel costs down? Really? Bullshit.

    3) *And they consume less so will pay less of the extra fuel charges in goods purchased.* Bottomline they’re the least able to pay the excise tax. It’s a user pays tax… everyone pays the same rate no matter what the income level is. Yes they’ll try and use less but if they work 10/ 20/ 30 kms away from home… you’re just stuck with it.

    Just move closer to work then. Ah yeah, everything’s just do this, just do that. That’s a real world answer, innit? Let’s just put up some big big big blocks of flats that house 1 000+ each and live like battery hens… then you won’t even need a car. Honestly… look at Auckland and Wellington. They were built only for cars cars cars cars cars and more cars. They’re more spread out than a contortionist pornstar.

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  57. mikenmild (12,340 comments) says:

    Luckily in Wellington we have a geography that is suited to the two main rail routes that can provide hubs for pedestrians and bus services. This works well, but could be better with some modest further investment. Funding for that would be available if the government dropped the lunatic idea of building the Transmission Gully motorway. Not much chance of rationality being applied to transport investment decisions though.

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  58. Lee C (2,720 comments) says:

    I ride a cycle, and a motorbike and drive. Cycling is the way of the future. Except the roads are so dangerous, at present. Dedicated cycle lanes and taxation/registration of cyclists will probably happen (at some stage), and I’ll pay like everyone else. Hell, I’d welcome dedicated cycle lanes, and the number of cyclists would increase rapidly if there were more available – just imagine its impact on traffic jams on school -traffic, for example

    Every so often, I have motorists buzz me, by passing very close at speed. Hilarious, a ton of fast-moving metal driven by a neanderthal. They probably ‘think’ (and I use the word ‘think’ loosely) that I am ‘road lice’.

    Fact is they are Arseholes. Besides, if I’m ‘road lice’, at least I’m only that when I’m on the road.

    Arseholes tend to be Arseholes 24/7, so on balance, I know which I’d rather be accused of, and how hollow some accusations are from some kinds of people.

    Thank you I just wanted to get that off my chest.

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  59. Left Right and Centre (3,007 comments) says:

    reply to above Wellingtonian:

    Only a true one-eyed Wellingtonian could possibly dare to suggest that Wellington’s geography is well suited to anything except cable cars, wind turbines and politicians with their boring little army of bureaucratic elves.

    I’m sure the Kapiti road users don’t find the idea of getting rid of 10-20kms of **shitarse 50km/h bullshit third world goat track** and building a new multi-lane easy-driving open road speed limit motorway a ‘lunatic idea’. And neither would the truck drivers. Take away the trucks and see how far a train set gets ya mate.

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  60. mikenmild (12,340 comments) says:

    It still beggars belief that we do not have a proper cycleway between Wellington and Petone, given the minuscule cost in comparison with a plethora of unnecessary roading projects.

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  61. mikenmild (12,340 comments) says:

    LRC
    Transmission Gully is a fantasy that even with the skewed business case represents a net loss on the investment. Staged improvements to the existing SH1 route are required, that’s all.

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  62. dave_c_ (225 comments) says:

    If your hypothesis is that “Those who dont use the facility shouldnt have to pay for it”, how do you explain the fairness in “Rate payers who dont use the library actually paying for it” ?

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  63. mikenmild (12,340 comments) says:

    That comes down to a broader set of choices between user charges and service funded from rates or other forms of taxation. Specific charges are good when there is a significant private benefit captured by a relatively small number of users. We have traditionally funded ‘free’ services from rates or taxes where there is seen to be an element of public good in the services provided.

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  64. swan (665 comments) says:

    nasska

    “You have a far better opinion of our political & bureaucratic masters than I.”

    No, my point is the State already has plenty of tools at its disposal to make your life miserable. Road pricing is not going to significantly add to this threat.

    “You realise that your speed can be monitored & probably your driving habits. Therefore expect to sign a waver allowing your insurance company access to all information as a condition of your policy. Expect many tickets for speeding when you never dreamt you were.”

    Thats all you’re worried about? Seriously??? People might be concerned about clandestine operations I suppose, but speeding tickets?? If issuing speeding tickets on the basis of GPS records was politically unpopular (which I suspect it would be) it wouldn’t happen. And if it did, it would be right out in the open. And what you are talking about is simply enforcing existing laws.

    As for the insurance companies – this could again only happen through a public (political) process. And if was legal, then good drivers would no longer have to subsidise poor drivers as much. Why is that a bad thing? This might come in even without road pricing if the technology is cheap enough, where the insurance company gives you a box for your car. Voluntary versions of this already exist.

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  65. tvb (4,553 comments) says:

    Cyclists do own cars in many cases. But they use the public highway system for their recreation and sport. They should do circuits in a public park for that purpose.

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  66. Steve (North Shore) (4,536 comments) says:

    It is not the amount of wear on the roads caused by the road lice, it is the cost of making the road user friendly for the bludging bastards. The motorist pays for that, the road lice pay for sweet nothing and they are loving it.
    When the road lice pay some sort of registration fee or user fee then it will be fair

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  67. Left Right and Centre (3,007 comments) says:

    mikenmild:

    Well I know it’s a nice fantasy for Kapiti folks who dream of a nice mindless drive into town.. hahaha

    So for you, you don’t like it based purely on cost or are you anti-roads? If the whole thing cost $10M as an extreme example… you’d still be against it?

    I don’t care what they do, I’m only interested in predicting what happens. You would know the proposed route for the thing. South of Pram via Whitby linking up at Linden. So we know people are coming from Kapiti… an ever growing and fairly prosperous commuter belt area… and TG would link Whitby to civilisation. And Whitby is full of what? People on the wealthy side? New streets cooking like popcorn as they fill out the rest of it? Game over. That road is on it’s way to a swanky suburb near you.

    Kapiti people are honourary Wellingtonians now and as such it’s their right to be hooked up to a motorway system. That’s just the way it is. I wonder if Wellington Airport made a business case for their proposed Wellywood sign?

    And then you might get a few added little benefits like… I don’t know…. fatal crashes not blocking the road for hours. Safer driving? What happens to the carbon footprint? Hmmm…. the cars and trucks flow better. Isn’t that the same or less carbon if they’re not nose-to-tail doing oh my god an hour. Alternative earthquake route out of this popsicle? Geez there’s probably a few more and I’m just not nerdy enough to know them all.

    How about simply being able to get past the **SLOW FUCKWIT!!!!** you’re currently stuck behind for the rest of time. Mana and Pukerua Bay and the waterfront… that’s too painful to even think about how shitty it is.

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  68. mikenmild (12,340 comments) says:

    Believe it or not, NZTA add up all just about all of those things that you mention and quantify the benefits. Even on their optimistic calculations, the benefit-cost ratio for Transmission Gully shows it is a waste of money. Quite simply, there are better ways to spend a billion+ dollars.

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  69. Left Right and Centre (3,007 comments) says:

    mikey… it couldn’t possibly just be a waste of money.

    All the folks that we can’t order to stop continuing to want to live lightyears away from where they work would use the damn thing instead of the current road.

    And they would be receiving the benefit of that road. It cannot possibly be a waste of money.

    That’s just fun with numbers mikey. It doesn’t ‘show’ anything mate. And noticeably absent from your response is anything that expressly states that you are opposed to TG based purely on cost or if you just don’t like big new roads that will encourage more and more folks living at the end of them.

    Whatever they end up doing… you need four lanes. You know what kiwi drivers are like. They are FUCKWITS mate. If you can’t pass them… they’ll do shit all an hour. All of a sudden… when you hit four lanes… when they can’t hold people up anymore… they speed up.

    How many kms is that thing proposed to be? 20? 25? 1km of road is going to cost $M50+? Get the Chinese over here…. they’ll make one that’s sort of ok for a tenth the cost. Stephen Tindall will give you a hand with that. It’s just laying a bit of shit from the quarry and putting holes in a few bloody hills. Stone the crows!!

    I was up in Pram ages ago and someone said 400 new houses were going up a year in Kapiti. They want things mikey… they want good roads and that voice only gets louder and louder with increasing numbers of residents.

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