Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Road pricing work carries on apace

Road pricing? Is it on? Is it off? Who actually knows? Some people might remeber that at Labour Conference, the Transport Secretary Ruth Kelly, said that road pricing was "inevitable"A month later it was reported that the Government had U-turned on the subject.

For a policy that is supposedly dead it's interesting though that since 2004 the Department of Transport has spent "£6.5 million on consultancy contracts including professional advice on possible technical designs, system architecture and cost modelling" and that "[a]nother £1.0 million is currently contractually committed through to the end of 2007-08".

Wouldn't be anything to do with ITIS Holdings that company that has the former Transport minister, Stephen Ladyman, who bigged up road pricing, consulting for it now? Worth noting at this point though that former MP and London Mayoral candidate, Steve Norris is a non-executive director of ITIS. NOt sure how that sqaures with his opposition to road pricing but there you go.

The point is though is that the DfT is spending quite a lot of money on a policy that it has been applied will not be happening. On, off, on again? Or never really off, just postponed to the right politically expeident moment?


anthonynorth said...

I'm surprised this isn't being funded by the Home Office. After all, if they go for the chip option, then a government department can know where everyone's car is, any place, any time.
Yet more snooping by the government courtesy of technology - and again, we'll be the mugs paying for it. In more ways than one.

Anonymous said...

if you do some digging into the oecd economic reports for the UK,2005 and 2006, you will find that road pricing is specifically mentioned in their financial analysis.this looks like the government are telling everyone but the public that road pricing is going to happen.

BrianSJ said...

Europe demands it. The DfT funding requires it (I think EUReferendum had a post on this a while back. Ruthie is just messing around so it is as successful as HIPS.