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Mr English attacks his party's own policy

Hon Judith Tizard
Associate Minister of Transport

27 August 2008 Media Statement

Mr English attacks his party's own policy

Associate Transport Minister Judith Tizard moved quickly to point out the hypocrisy of the National Party Finance spokesperson, and it would now seem new Transport spokesperson, Mr Bill English.

Despite Mr English's statements to the contrary, Ministers in the Labour-led government do not, and have never, favoured the option that would place a fee on inefficient vehicles, Judith Tizard restated today after making this very clear in the House during question time.

"In fact, that is National Party policy as stated on page 5 of their Blue Green vision, a policy document that must have been approved by Mr English himself in 2006," said Judith Tizard.

"He approved that policy and now he is attacking it as one of three options laid out in a discussion document, an option I might add, that Ministers of this government do not favour. This is yet another National Party policy flip flop, but are we surprised?

"On top of yet another flip flop, Mr English cannot hide the embarrassment of National's $50 per week road toll secret agenda by attacking a discussion document, that’s been public all year, which simply puts a range of options out there for public discussion.

'We believe in putting options out there for discussion, we believe in open government — not hidden agendas," said Judith Tizard.

National described the introduction of financial penalties for inefficient vehicles as 'common sense' and a 'practical measure that New Zealand could be taking.'

"This is all a bit rich when compared to Mr English's behaviour today and yesterday when he claimed the government had approved a 'stealth tax' when they had done no such thing," said Judith Tizard.

"The Labour-led government is not going to sit on its laurels and do nothing about vehicle emissions. The rest of the world is introducing rules to improve the efficiency of cars entering their fleet. If New Zealand is not careful, we'll end up the dumping ground for the dross that is not acceptable in other countries.

"This government is trying to save money for New Zealanders at the pump and make sure we can breathe clean air," said Judith Tizard.


ENDS

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