Roads and taxation
Sir, – Gavin Daly (Letters, August 15th) suggests that pedestrians, cyclists and cars should all have an equal right to road space. I pay €199 per year for road tax, plus a levy of €0.90 per litre on my petrol purchases, for the right to drive my hybrid car on the roads of Ireland. What rate of tax does he suggest should be levied on cyclists and pedestrians to achieve equality for all road users? – Yours, etc,
Sir, – I might agree with Ann Fitzsimons’s point (August 17th) regarding the amount of tax motorists pay relative to other road users, if one did not take into account the costs of mass car use to society.
The tax motorists pay annually is based on emissions, not used to build roads, as is often the misconception. This includes noise pollution, air pollution, water pollution and, of course, greenhouse gases. Indeed, a study from the Sustainable Development Commission in the UK found that motorists were subsidised to the tune of £9.6 billion when all that is taken into account.
All citizens pay tax and all views should be considered in the debate around what we do with public space. The “road tax” fallacy must end. – Yours, etc,