I recognise that the majority of people in the UK use their cars to get around and are dependent on that freedom. For this reason, the Government has announced a new plan to support people who drive, by keeping motoring costs under control, outlining 30 measures that will see smoother journeys, end unfair enforcement, crack down on inconsiderate driving and crucially make parking much easier and less frustrating for local residents. You can read the Plan online
Ultimately, I believe that the Government is committed to ensuring that decisions impacting motorists are both proportionate and made with the consent of local residents so that drivers are able to go about their everyday lives without unnecessary impositions.
I have supported the Government’s actions since 2010 which has seen fuel duty frozen for 13 consecutive years saving drivers over £65 billion. At the Budget earlier this year, the Government announced continued support by maintaining the rates of fuel duty at the same levels for an additional 12 months, extending the temporary 5p fuel duty cut and cancelling the planned inflation increase for 2023-24. That represents a saving for drivers this year of overall around £5bn and for the average car driver around £100 and around £200 since the 5p cut was introduced. The Government will make further announcements on spending decisions at the Autumn Statement due to be held on 22nd November 2023.
2035 Ban on Sale of New Petrol and Diesel Cars
I am supportive of measures so that we will reach net zero together but they must be in a pragmatic, proportionate and realistic manner that will ease the burden on working people, rather than at the people’s expense and risk unnecessary high costs and burdens. That is why I support the decision to delay the ban on the sale of new petrol and diesel cars from 2030 to 2035. The alteration to 2035 brings us into line with most other countries and allows for more time to develop the extensive electric charging network, which is well underway with 44,000 charging points nationwide, for the battery technology to become even cheaper and the range improving so that households make the switch from petrol and diesel with convenience and reliability.
Speed Limits & Low Traffic Neighbourhoods
The Government has updated guidance on 20mph speed limits in England to prevent their blanket use in areas where it’s not appropriate, and amending guidance on low-traffic neighbourhoods to ensure local consent. As part of the review of low-traffic neighbourhoods, the Government will consider measures for existing anti-driver policies that did not secure local consent. The plans also aim to stop councils from using CCTV cameras to limit drivers unfairly, consulting on ways to prevent schemes which aggressively restrict where people can drive.
ULEZ (Update Sept 23)
While I understand that air pollution does pose an environmental risk to human health, I do not agree that it should be done through expanding the ULEZ as the Mayor has now done. As specified in the ‘ULEZ Scheme Integrated Impact Assessment’, the Mayor’s own independent impact report, the expansion of the ULEZ is estimated to have a negligible beneficial impact on improving air quality in outer London areas.
It will have a detrimental impact on local businesses and the people of Castle Point, who aren’t able to vote in the London mayoral election but are directly affected by his decision. Despite the hundreds of millions of pounds proposed to be raised annually, the Mayor has announced a limited scrappage scheme to help Londoners prepare for expansion. This is purely a money-grabbing exercise hiding behind the guise of air pollution, it is unacceptable and does not have my support.