Bi-partisan letter urges GLA member to vote against 'taxing' ULEZ expansion
Wednesday 16 November 2022: Party leaders from both sides of Hillingdon Council's chamber have joined forces to urge their GLA representative to vote against the Mayor of London's plans to expand the ULEZ.
Hillingdon Council Leader, Cllr Ian Edwards and opposition leader, Cllr Peter Curling, have written a joint letter to Dr Onkar Sahota, the GLA Member for Ealing and Hillingdon, insisting he vote against the proposals.
In the letter they refer to the plans as a punitive tax on borough residents and businesses, already struggling with a cost-of-living crisis.
They state the £12.50 daily charge will hit the poorest families the hardest and cite the Independent Impact Assessment - released alongside TfL's consultation into the plans - which stated the scheme would not deliver the environmental benefits claimed.
The letter details how they believe the scheme is 'the wrong policy in pursuit of the right objective' and how for a borough like Hillingdon, environmental benefits would come best by improving public transport connections to enable people to shift away from car journeys.
The pair suggest an express bus service connecting Uxbridge to the Elizabeth Line stations at West Drayton and Hayes and Harlington and improved bus services would be far more effective measures in reducing local vehicle emissions.
Cllr Edwards, said: "If Mr Khan were to visit our borough, then attempt to traverse it by public transport, it would become immediately apparent that our residents and visitors have considerable transport challenges compared to those in central London.
"Our large, green, borough, with its expanses of open space and woodland doesn't reflect the urban cityscapes where such interventions are appropriate and where residents are well served by a dense, frequent, public transport network.
"Until there is parity in those public transport options, there can't be parity in ULEZ measures, without causing significant harm to our borough, so we're calling on Dr Sahota to ensure that can't happen."
Transport for London consulted earlier this year on Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan's plans to expand the ULEZ to include outer London boroughs. At the time the council strongly objected to the proposals.
On 14 July, a motion in objection to the plans was unanimously passed at a full council meeting.