Len’s poll tax

Stuff reports:

Aucklanders should pay a levy of a few dollars a week on top of their rates to kick-start transport developments in the city, Mayor Len Brown believes.

The suggestion will come in the mayor’s report to Thursday’s council meeting on Auckland’s draft 10-year budget, it is understood.

Feedback on the draft budget in March and April showed that around half of Aucklanders want significantly more investment in transport, and support the council’s $10.3 billion accelerated transport plan.

A similar proportion of people are prepared to pay a $2 per trip motorway charge to fund it.

However tolling Auckland’s motorways would require a law change by central government plus the setting up of a complex tolling system on the city’s network of state highways.

Brown is believed to be in favour of collecting an interim transport levy from ratepayers until that infrastructure is put in place.

A levy per household? That’s what people call a poll tax.

It’s also understood he is sticking to his commitment that Aucklanders will pay no more than an average 2.5 per cent annual rates rise, not the 3.5 per cent set out in the draft Long Term Plan (LTP).

No he isn’t. A tax is a tax, no matter what you call it.

A transport levy on top of a rates rise means Auckland households will be paying more in compulsory charges.

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