Government should heed NRMA's call for tolls to be capped at CPI

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The NSW Government should heed the NRMA’s wake-up call and concede that road tolls should not exceed the inflation rate, according to Shadow Minister for Roads Jodi McKay.

The NRMA’s latest research report, Improving the Performance of Sydney’s Road Network (prepared by Houston Kemp Economists), has backed Labor’s position that tolls for new motorways should increase at a rate no greater than CPI.

“The NRMA’s detailed and timely research underlines precisely how unjust it is for the NSW Government to be slugging motorists with tolls that climb faster than inflation on the Northconnex and Westconnex,” Ms McKay said. 

“I don’t think anyone is arguing that Sydney motorists don’t have a tough enough time of it already. For Mike Baird and Duncan Gay to whack above CPI tolls onto their pile of problems is unconscionable.

“The NRMA is absolutely spot on here. The very least Sydney motorists deserve is a bit of certainty about how fast their tolls will rise. Tying those tolls to CPI will provide that certainty.

“Labor has long argued that motorists should not be gouged when they are simply trying to get around their city.

“The NRMA has now added its important voice to this call and it is vital that the government sits up and takes notice.”

The report also called for rebates to motorists for poor motorway performance, and the introduction of IPART or a similar authority to oversee negotiations for new tollway contracts or any extension - among many other recommendations. 

Ms McKay said the detail in the report represented a positive and thoughtful contribution to the NSW roads debate and she would consider all recommendations carefully before seeking further discussions with the NRMA.