I have to say that I wasn’t particularly surprised at some of the facts and figures that the Beeb has published today regarding Petrol duty (aka. Fuel Tax) and the spending of said duty.
We all know that there are more cars on the road right now that ever, so therefor there is record amounts of tax being taken by the government from road tax, petrol duty and so on and so forth, but to find that from the Ã‚Â£37bn taken every year in fuel tax, less and less is being used every year to actually build and maintain our roads, public transport systems and motorways.
So, this chart is showing us that in 1975, mostly because of the fact that there were far less cars on our roads, only Ã‚Â£13.8bn was collected in tax from fuel, but, only Ã‚Â£1bn was not directly injected straight back into the road and public transport network.
Compare that to the latest figures available, 2000-2001, a record Ã‚Â£37.7bn was collected from duty on our petrol pumps, but, Ã‚Â£30.7bn of that was not spent on the road or public transport network. In fact, only Ã‚Â£7bn was.
What a shambles.
The government are trying to get us out of our cars and onto public transport, trying to make us walk or cycle, but aren’t spending the money to make these services useable.
I travel on the train 4 out of 5 days of my working week and I can tell you, I would not do it out of choice.
If I could drive, which eventually I will be able to do, I will.
Not because it’s quicker, or easier, in fact, to get from Newport to Cardiff and vice versa, which is where I travel on those 4 out of 5 days, it is actually far, far quicker to get on the train.
25 minutes in the car. 13 minutes on the train.
But each morning between 7 and 9, the train companies insist on sending engines that just have two, or sometimes even one carriage. With 100-200 people waiting on the platform at any given time, I often end up either waiting for the next train (where the same situation arises) or if I am able to get on, am squashed up against a door/window with dozens of other people that have had to stand because there is not enough seating space.
Why could they have not clipped on an extra one or two carriages, even just for the rush hour?
Sometimes I really just want to lose my rag with our government.
I just want to know, where IS all this fuel duty money going? It certainly isn’t going to the National Health Service.
Can anybody answer that question?