Motorway tolls move a step closer
Updated 2:54PM Tuesday August 26, 2008

Motorists look more likely to face tolls on Auckland's newest motorway extension following a decision today in favour of private funding.

A steering group has advised the Government that a public-private partnership (PPP) would be the best way of building the new $2 billion section of the city's Western Ring Route.

Finance Minister Michael Cullen said a PPP, which would mean tolls of about $2 a trip, was looking "pretty positive".

National's deputy leader Bill English said in Parliament this afternoon that this would amount to $20 a week for commuters, which would wipe out the average tax cut taxpayers are set to receive in October.

Debate over an acceptable level of tolls was sparked on Sunday by National's transport spokesman Maurice Williamson who said a toll of $3 to $5 a trip would be acceptable to most drivers.

More here.