‘He doesn’t care!’: Drivers and MPs slam Sadiq Khan’s ULEZ expansion plans – ‘Hammer blow’

Sadiq Khan's ULEZ expansion is 'appalling' says Norris

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London Mayor Sadiq Khan plans to extend the ULEZ charging area on August 29, 2023, prompting Transport for London to launch a public consultation, which ends today. Originally launched in May this year, the consultation looked to hear from residents of London and the surrounding areas about how it would affect drivers.

The extension will extend the ULEZ from the North and South Circular roads to cover almost all of Greater London.

If the plans are successful, non-compliant petrol and diesel vehicles will have to pay £12.50 every day to drive in London.

In the last four days, more than 5,000 supporters of the FairFuelUK Campaign and the Alliance of British Drivers have responded to the consultation.

Of the supporters, most expressed their fervent opposition to the ULEZ expansion proposals.

Former Conservative Party Leadership Candidate and current Trade Minister Penny Mordaunt voiced her concern about the proposed extension.

The MP for Portsmouth North said: “This is likely to have a disproportionately negative impact on those in the outer boroughs, and on businesses in places nearby, like those in Portsmouth. 

“This is poor timing given the pressures small firms and families are under.”

It has been estimated that one in three drivers plan to sell their vehicle in the next six months because of the ULEZ expansion.

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Londoners are growing increasingly concerned about the expansion, with 60 percent admitting they are worried about how it will affect their finances. 

Two thirds of those surveyed can’t afford to switch to an electric vehicle or compliant petrol car.

Another MP, Robert Halfon, said: “This would be yet another tax for hardworking motorists in greater and outer London. 

“It will be a hammer blow to my Harlow constituents, many of them are van drivers who have to travel to Greater London every day. 

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“Instead of assaulting working people with extra costs, the Mayor should be trying to cut the cost of living.”

Mayor Sadiq Khan has previously said the extension is necessary to ensure London’s public health emergency.

He hopes to meet net zero carbon emissions in the capital by 2030, with 80 percent of all journeys made in the city on foot, bike or via public transport.

Howard Cox, founder of the FairFuelUK Campaign, hit out at the proposals, saying drivers are being targeted at the worst time possible.

He said: “Most rational people, all across the UK are baffled how one man can have the singular power, via his left wing idealistic ill-informed green agenda, be allowed to even contemplate punishing London’s drivers yet more so.

“All as per usual, at the inevitable expense of already high taxed and demonised drivers.”

For some drivers, they face monthly costs as high as £387.50 to drive inside the area if their car is not compliant.

If someone, like a van driver or key worker, were to drive in the capital every day for a year, they would be hit with collective charges of more than £4,500.

One local business owner, Lance Forman, Owner of H. Forman & Son Smoked Salmon, said: “Like many small businesses making deliveries to customers, first we had to face the congestion charge and then the ULEZ charge. 

“These charges are bad for business, pushing up their costs and ultimately prices for their customers. 

“Extending the reach as Khan is now doing, shows he doesn’t care about inflation, doesn’t care about business and doesn’t care about the cost of living. 

“This is not the time or the place.”

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