Jan 31 2013 By Helen Hunt
A SENIOR Wirral Councillor has blasted moves to increase tunnel tolls in Merseyside by 10p from April.
Cllr Chris Blakeley, Moreton West and Saughall Massie Ward, says the hike penalises people living in the borough and is nothing short of another tax.
The transport authority Merseytravel is set to approve the 7% rise from £1.50 to £1.60 for cars on Thursday.
The increase will net an extra £2.6m for the Labour run authority - which is not needed for the upkeep of the tunnels.
Cllr Blakeley said: “I find this absolutely incredible. Over the last 10 years Merseytravel has taken more than £40m pounds in surplus tolls to subsidise half empty new headquarters, tramlines that never saw the light of day and other vanity projects. This increase is coming at the wrong time for thousands of drivers.
"The ill conceived 2004 Tunnels Act has allowed Merseytravel to fleece drivers.
“It is nothing more than a tax on the people of Wirral and the wider Community.
“Councillors who serve on Merseytravel should remember who they are supposed to be representing.
“Merseytravel needs to get its own house in order before coming back to the hard pressed drivers in Wirral.”
Merseytravel said it was not their policy to comment ahead of meetings.