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New Zealanders Conned By Petrol Tax Increase

Transfund Surplus Shows New Zealanders Conned By Petrol Tax Increase

Labour should explain why they put petrol tax up when the Government's roading agencies can't spend the money it already has, says National Party Leader Bill English.

"The head of the road funding agency said today that there was an unspent surplus of $25m this financial year. Martin Gummer also said Transfund would not be able to use all of the $175m raised by the new petrol tax this year.

"Since the unspent petrol tax goes back to the consolidated fund, Labour should come clean and tell New Zealand how much of the petrol tax increase will actually be used for roads and how much will be used for the election lolly scramble

"New Zealanders will quite rightfully feel angry that all this money has been sitting here and yet they are being forced to pay an extra 4.7 cents in petrol tax.

"This latest announcement only further cements the National Party's case that there was no need for New Zealanders to have to pay more for petrol or road user chargers as the Government already has the money sitting there.

"The petrol tax looks like a rushed job, a package cobbled together to relieve the political pressure on Helen Clark in her own back yard. Labour is reverting to type, a tax spend and borrow government.

"Today's revelation by Transfund will increase the strong public support for Nationals commitment to repeal the petrol tax.

"The Transfund chairman stated that the real problem is getting resource consents for new projects. If Labour was serious about resolving Auckland traffic problems they would speed up the consent process. As it is they will collect hundreds of millions of new petrol tax without a single sod being turned in Auckland or elsewhere.

Ends

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