Dartford MP proposes new law to stop London Mayor introducing ‘catastrophic’ car charge to drive in London

PM statement on covid 22.9.20

Dartford MP, Gareth Johnson is proposing a new law aimed at curbing the powers of the London Mayor who is proposing a new ‘catastrophic’ car tax charge for everyone driving into the capital.

Mr Johnson’s Ten Minute Rule Bill, ‘Road User Charging (Outer London) Bill: A Bill to provide that the Mayor of London may not impose charges for driving in Outer London; and for connected purposes’ aims to change the law to prevent the London Mayor from being able to introduce this levy on motorists.

Mr Johnson said: “The proposed Outer London Congestion Charge would be catastrophic for the residents of Dartford and for hundreds of thousands of people who drive into Greater London for any reason. It is aimed at vehicles registered outside of London and so will hit London’s neighbours the hardest, but it will also impact on businesses based in outer London as far fewer people will travel into the capital to use them. It therefore will create a financial wall around London.

The proposed daily charge of £3.50 would amount to more than a thousand pounds a year for those crossing the border on a daily basis. The border with Greater London is not neat, it runs through residential roads and thousands of people would be hit by this charge just for driving out of their own road. This proposal would impose a form of taxation on people who have no say on who the London Mayor is, so it is quite literally a form of taxation without representation or accountability.

This is the reason I am introducing a Bill to stop the London Mayor from being able to introduce this charge.

I recognise this Bill is unlikely to progress into a law change immediately, however, I hope it highlights a key issue and sends a clear message to the London Mayor that residents in Dartford will not sit and wait for an unfair, undemocratic tax to be imposed on them.”

The Bill is being introduced in the House of Commons on Tuesday, April 13 and Mr Johnson will say that as well as having a negative impact on residents’ day-to-day lives, this proposed charge will hit key workers hardest. These are people who cannot always use public transport due to shift work.  Just over half of London’s police fficers and Firefighters live outside of Greater London and would be hit by this tax, the very people who keep London safe.