Exclusive: Ministers 'water down' National Roads Fund plans

Highways Reporters

The Government does not intend to legislate to create the National Roads Fund from 2020, Transport Network understands, in what some say is a watering down of the plans.

Senior Whitehall sources suggested the original idea was to legislate, and this retreat could suggest a weakening of the commitment in the same way the new government backtracked on making the National Infrastructure Commission a statutory body.

In response to questions from Transport Network, both Department for Transport officials and Transport Minister Andrew Jones declined to state whether the fund - which would be created through hypothecating vehicle excise duty (VED) - would be guaranteed under legislation.

However a DfT spokesman said there was no need to legislate and told Transport Network that the focus was on delivering the fund in the most efficient way.

Mr Jones said: "We have no intention of making any changes in our funding arrangements. The general principle of giving more clarity on [Highways England] funding is an absolute given and the hypothecation of the roads fund is a part of that."

You can read the full story on Transport Network here.


By Dom Browne.
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