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Road levies suggested as alternative to fuel tax

Steven Walton
car fuel
Fueling a car could get more expensive in the future as multiple councils suggest fuel taxes.  PxHere

Christchurch City Councillor Mike Davidson believes introducing a fuel tax in Christchurch wouldn't charge the "right people".

In April, following the announcement of a regional fuel tax for Auckland, Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel authored a submission to Parliament's Finance Committee asking for a similar fuel tax to help fund "much needed" post-earthquake infrastructure.

The submission was rejected and the Land Transport Management (Regional Fuel Tax) Amendment Bill has prevented the introduction of any similar tax by a New Zealand council until 2021. 

City councillor Mike Davidson, who represents the Papanui Ward, said he wanted Christchurch to look at "something slightly different".

He suggested a congestion levy targeting Christchurch workers living in nearby districts, such as Waimakariri and Selwyn.

He argued they should be contributing to the cost of improving the roads they drive on. 

Councillor Pauline Cotter, who chairs Christchurch City Council's Infrastructure, Transport & Environment Committee, said she was in favour of Davidson's proposal. A congestion levy was "very easy to implement", she said. 

Newshub revealed earlier in June that 14 councils across New Zealand were considering the idea of a fuel tax following the announcement of an 11.5c per litre one for Auckland, set to start in July.  

Christchurch City Council and Environment Canterbury Regional Council were both included on the list.