BANES LIBERAL DEMOCRATS PLANNING "A DIRECT ASSAULT" ON CAR OWNERS IN BATH AND NE SOMERSET
Bath Conservatives say the Liberal Democrat manifesto for the elections to BANES Council represent an attack on car ownership in Bath and across NE Somerset.
The Lib Dem manifesto, which was published yesterday, three weeks before the vote on Thursday, May 4th, contains a number of anti-car ownership policies, including:
- extending the Clean Air Zone fines to lower emission vehicles, including possible private cars, and widening the zone to include major trunk roads in North-East Somerset;
- cutting off up to 48 neighbourhood roads across the city, forcing all traffic all day to use the main routes in the city;
- establishing more resident parking charging zones, where residents have to pay to park, and visitors are excluded;
- increasing car parking charges based on the age and emissions of the vehicle: effectively charging those with older vehicles more;
- further appointments to the Council's "behavioural team" to make people behave as the Liberal Democrats want.
Former Conservative Councillor, Bob Goodman, who is standing in Combe Down, said he found the manifesto shocking.
“The Liberal Democrats are no longer hiding their anti-car bias. If you own an older car, they want to charge you to drive it not just in Bath but on major roads in North East Somerset. They will charge you more to park. And they will charge anyone who parks their car on the road outside their house. This is a direct assault on car ownership, and the least well-off will pay most.
“By contrast, Conservatives will take a balanced approach: we will manage Bath's traffic better especially during the rush hours by taking some commuter traffic away from the city centre. And we will invest in better pedestrian routes, in lifeline bus services and separated cycle routes East to West which make sense.”