More taxes and less roads for Southland

Press Release – New Zealand National Party

The government’s new plan for transport is bad news for Southland says local MP, Sarah Dowie.

“It is hard to see how the Government’s transport plans won’t come at the expense of transport investment in Invercargill and Southland when billions of dollars are being ripped from the regions to pay for trams down the Auckland CBD.

“Phil Twyford is quoted on page 4 of the Southland Times (27 April 2018) as saying that his Government is giving roads to Auckland “without taking money away from the regions”. I just don’t believe this to be true.” Sarah Dowie says.

“Yesterday the Minister threw a half planned, half funded multi-billion dollar tram-set at Auckland whilst telling Southlanders they are going to be taxed up to 25 cents per litre at the pump to pay for it.

“Hardworking taxpayers are about to be whacked by an increase in petrol taxes to fund roading projects at the other end of the country.

“The kicker is that this Minister is cutting $5.35 billion out of the State Highway budget in his draft Government Policy Statement on Land Transport – these are highways that we all drive on and that connect our region to the rest of New Zealand. This plan is undermining Southland and is a huge blow for our rural communities and the regions.

“People in Invercargill and Southland will be paying more but getting less so that we can put half-funded and half-planned trams down the Auckland CBD, how is that fair?”

“Every Southlander knows that we rely on our roads for farming, dairy, forestry and tourism to name just a few but this Government does not see the regions as a priority, actually we don’t even feature in the plan”

“We don’t need this. Southlanders and New Zealand deserves better.

“It’s just not good enough. I will fight for our communities against this attempt by the Government to take even more money out of the back pockets of Southland families,” Ms Dowie says.


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