CTC's Budget reaction: maintain our roads before building more

CTC expects delays to the Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy given its lack of attention in today's budget

CTC's Budget reaction: maintain our roads before building more

Reacting to Chancellor George Osborne's tax overhaul announcement in today's Budget, CTC says that it wants to see less emphasis on national road building and more on local road maintenance, while raising questions about the Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy.

George Osborne's unveiling of higher taxes for low-emissions cars in today's summer budget has raised more questions than answers over the Government's plans for a new Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy.

The Chancellor announced the ending of tax concessions for low emissions cars to raise funds for road spending, claiming that the current system “isn’t sustainable and it isn’t fair”. 

CTC is concerned that this could effectively create a 'road fund', leading to calls for a similar tax on cyclists to pay for the Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy. The original 'Road Fund' was abolished in 1937, thanks to opposition from Chancellor Winston Churchill, who long argued that spending motor taxes only on roads would lead to motorists assuming a 'moral ownership' of them.

Roger Geffen MBE, Policy and Campaigns Director at CTC, said: "George Osborne has today reversed Winston Churchill's most sensible transport decision. Given this, it is therefore a relief that Parliament and the Prime Minister are already committed to cycling investment, and to 'cycle-proof' all road and traffic schemes to ensure cycling is properly designed into them from the outset.

We still want to know how much the Government will allocate to the promised Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy, and when they will confirm this.”

Roger Geffen, Policy and Campaigns Director, CTC

"However, CTC still believes this is a doubly regressive policy, raising more tax from cleaner cars to build more roads, when councils are struggling to maintain the ones we’ve got. And we still want to know how much the Government will allocate to the promised Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy, and when they will confirm this.”

CTC will continue to press the Government on creating a cycling budget of at least £10 per person per year, rising to £20 as cycle use grows.

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