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Roads: Tolls

Volume 475: debated on Wednesday 7 May 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what research her Department has (a) commissioned and (b) plans to commission on enabling technologies for road pricing schemes; and what timetable is planned for such research in each case. (199522)

The Government have invited the private sector to demonstrate how they might run a system of charging for road use according to time of day and route chosen. On 12 March we issued, to eight pre-qualified bidders, the first invitation to tender in this two-year demonstrations project, for the framework for road user service providers. We expect that this framework agreement will be established during June 2008, with the first trials involving volunteers getting underway this autumn.

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how her Department takes into account the average income of local residents when deciding on the level of tolls for river road crossings and tunnels for which it is responsible. (203582)

The only charging regime for which the Department for Transport is responsible is the scheme for the Dartford Crossing. Income of local residents is not specifically taken into account in setting charges.