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Jenny Willott MP hits out at tolls increase

January 5, 2015 1:01 PM
Originally published by Jenny Willott MP

Scrap Severn Tolls

Following the increase of the Severn Bridge tolls to £6.50, the Welsh Liberal Democrat MP for Cardiff Central, Jenny Willott MP, has reiterated her party's call for the tolls to be scrapped.

From January 1st cars will have to pay £6.50 - up from the current £6.40 - while small goods vehicles and small buses face a 30p rise to £13.10, and heavy goods vehicles and buses will have to pay £19.60, up from £19.20.

The Severn Crossings are currently managed by a private concessionaire. The concession will end when a revenue target collected from tolls is reached. Current forecasts are that the concession will end in 2018. Once the tolls are transferred into public ownership and debts are repaid, the Liberal Democrats have pledged to scrap the tolls completely.

A debate on scrapping the tolls was held in the National Assembly on 11th November, where Labour, the Conservatives and Plaid all voted against scrapping the tolls.

Jenny said:

"These tolls are a huge strain on businesses in Cardiff, yet still Labour, the Tories and Plaid believe in keeping them. The Liberal Democrats are the only party who will scrap the unfair Severn Bridge tolls.

"By scrapping the tolls, it is estimated that the Liberal Democrats would boost the South Wales economy by around £107 million a year.

"Motorway tolls are not prevalent across the United Kingdom. So why on earth should people be forced to pay a tax to enter Wales?

"Not only would scrapping the tolls boost Wales' economy, but it would save the average commuter over £1,535 a year. This policy is an important step along the way to helping build a stronger economy, and also a fairer society."