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Way cleared for funding of road safety initiatives

Hon Steven Joyce
Minister of Transport

16 November 2010 Media Statement

Way cleared for funding of road safety initiatives

The availability of funding for the government’s priority road safety initiatives – which are part of the Safer Journeys road safety strategy – has been confirmed with an amendment to the government policy statement (GPS) on land transport funding.

The GPS sets out the government’s priorities for expenditure from the National Land Transport Fund by allocating funding through a range of activity classes. The road safety initiatives outlined in Safer Journeys can now be funded by the NZ Transport Agency through a new class, known as ‘road user safety’.

Transport Minister Steven Joyce says the minor changes will help with a number of road safety initiatives which will be implemented next year, including:

• the introduction of alcohol interlocks as a sentencing option for repeat and serious drink drive offenders (note the likely start date is 2012), which can also include the provision of alcohol assessments for these offenders
• the introduction of zero BAC licences for repeat offenders
• a survey by Police as to the actual harm caused by drink-drivers drivers with a BAC between 0.05 and 0.08
• motorcycle and moped licensing changes to improve safety - for example, the identification of motorcycles that are approved for learner riders (LAMS), and the proposed moped licence class
• young driver safety package.

The ‘road user safety’ class will replace the ‘demand management and community programmes’ class and align closely with the Safer Journeys strategy.

“As well as Safer Journeys first actions, the new class will also be refocused on community-based activities that make a significant contribution to safer road user behaviour - such as education, promotion, advertising and awareness campaigns,” says Mr Joyce.

Community-based activities that do not have a direct safety component such as workplace, community and personal travel planning, and household travel surveys, have been moved to the more appropriate ‘maintenance and operation of local roads’ class.

Other changes to the GPS include moving community-based activities that support model walking and cycling communities to the ‘walking and cycling facilities’ activity class, and reducing funding ranges for the ‘transport planning’ class following a review by the NZTA.

ENDs

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