The Road Surface Treatments Association (RSTA) has welcomed the Chancellor’s new vehicle excise duty road fund.
Unveiled in his first Conservative Budget, George Osborne announced a new national fund that will see the introduction in 2017 of three new levels of vehicle excise duty for new cars, starting with a lowest duty of £140 per year. He promised that “every single penny raised in vehicle excise duty in England will pay for the sustained investment our roads so badly need”. Having commented that the quality of UK road network lags behind that of Puerto Rico and Nambia, the Chancellor stated that “tax paid on people’s cars will be used to improve the roads they drive on.”
The announcement marks a return to when road tax was collected specifically to fund road network improvements.
“We warmly welcome the recognition by the Chancellor of the poor state of the road network and his announcement to provide a dedicated road fund to address this,” said Howard Robinson, RSTA Chief Executive. “For many years we have called for the monies raised from road taxation to be ring-fenced and used for the purposes that the road tax was set-up for”.
However, he warned: “Road taxes raise some £6 billion a year whilst fuel duty raises a further £27 billion. More of this money should be invested into long-term road maintenance that addresses the £12 billion necessary to bring our road network up to a reasonable standard.”