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Should 2p of fuel duty go into road repairs?

Government urged to spend part of fuel duty on UK’s “deteriorating road network”.

The government should spend two pence of fuel duty on road repairs. That is according to the Local Government Association (LGA), which said that extra injection of money would amount to an additional £1 billion per year.

The Local Government Association believes the extra money would allow the UK to fix all potholes and begin catching up on general road maintenance by the mid-2020s. It said the £168 million set aside by the government for road repairs was inadequate, according to the RAC.

Estimates believe it would £12.93 billion to repair the entire UK road repair backlog. Based on current funding, the task would take around 20 years. The government believes it will have repaired three million potholes by March 2015.

“UK motoring taxation is estimated to raise more than £45bn for the Treasury a year. Fuel duty is, of course, the main revenue raiser, along with VAT which is charged on top of duty on every litre of fuel purchased, so it doesn’t seem too much to ask to devote more of this to fixing local roads,” RAC head of external affairs Pete Williams commented.

“The 2014 RAC Report on Motoring found that 85% of drivers want to see a higher proportion of transport investment spent on improving local roads and 68% want local roads to be a priority,” he added.

Such is the problem of potholes, local authorities admitted they would rather payout pothole compensation claims than fix roads. Consumer magazine and website Which said the cost of compensation was £22.8 million.

It sure looks like potholes and bumpy roads are here to stay, especially as repairing the roads merely cures the symptoms, not the problem. Maybe we should take matters into our own hands like these Columbian women?

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