Councillor Don Palmer Providing Local Leadership & Working for You

In a final article before leaving the pastures of the Eastern Courier to head down to the Guardian coverage of things Holdfast we find reporter John Stokes quoting our CEO as calling for congestion charges in our response to the State Governments Integrated Transport and Land Use Plan.

In order to put the record straight I have re-read the full submission we made to the Government and quite frankly I am concerned that John’s take on what our CEO is purported to have said. To his credit within the article he has indicated the words used in the submission.

They are….”use of congestion charges have not been raised as part of the funding proposals. Road networks are already overloaded at peak times and smart technology should be considered as one of the measures to address this”.

As I see it such a statement is in the context we are responding to a detailed 30 year plan and asking a question, along with many others in a 4 page response. Indeed he is signing off on a submission that gathered the thoughts of others, including some but not all elected members.

Whether it is worthy of implementing is an entirely different question.

The focus of the submission was on supporting initiatives within the plan to encourage traffic away from what realistically are residential streets in Unley to ring routes. It also questions additional ways of diverting the traffic. And I can tell you that elected members would have differing views on some of them.

Interestingly the article indicates that this proposal for a congestion tax has failed to win the support of the RAA but then quotes RAA automotive policy manager mark Borlace as indicating that congestion taxes should only be introduced after people have ways of navigating around the area of congestion where we don’t want cars.

Well you know what. When I read that I see the RAA actually agreeing with congestion taxes, conditional though that may be.

The governments plan is all about achieving precisely that.

More on the plan itself later….which I encourage all Unley residents to become conversant with.