Over 4,500 Sign Petition Against Vehicle Duty Changes

A petition calling for the gov to drop its plans to introduce a £50 vehicle duty for zero emissions vehicles has attracted over 4,000 signatures.

Gef revealed over the weekend that Tynwald will be asked next week to back the introduction of the charge. If approved, vehicle duties will continue using the current categories with the gov ‘gradually introducing’ weight based duty categories which will remove the current engine capacity based duties while all other duties will rise by 1%.

The gov says the measures are needed ‘to raise the revenue required to continue to maintain the road network and promote safety whilst encouraging the use of less polluting vehicles’.

The petition, created by Francessca Ellison, calls on the government to put the duty on fuel, rather than individual vehicles, as it is done in Jersey.

Those who have signed it have said the changes will impact working families and pensioners the most, while several people have commented on the poor state of some Manx roads.

It reads: ‘For years, our government has increased “vehicle duty”. They’ve increased the veteran tax which used to be free and abolished the half price 25year. 

‘Now they want to change the way our vehicles are taxed. Vehicle owners will be subject to a huge increase in vehicle duty. Family’s with family cars will potentially pay over £500 due to the weight of their vehicle. Small businesses will be crippled by the proposed increase.

‘They don’t call it “Road Tax” because our roads are an absolute disgrace and they should be ashamed. Why should people who have “weekend cars” or campers suffer because the government wants to squeeze that little bit more from us to make up for their bad decisions. There will be no incentive to buy eco friendly cars and the majority won’t be able to afford an electric vehicle. The government wants us to support climate change but they are going about it in a totally unfair way. 

‘It’s about time they followed Jersey and put the duty payable on Fuel. Fairest way for everyone! We need to stop this new category they are trying to sneak through which will double the price on your average family car. Show your support and leave a message with how it would affect you.

The planned changes for this year include:

  • A general price increase of 1% rounded up to the nearest pound

  • A diesel car and light and commercial vehicle surcharge on more polluting vehicles, that is those that do no meet Euro 6 emissions standards

  • A £50 vehicle duty for zero emission vehicles

  • A provision to pay vehicle duty for six months at a time for duty levied at over £200 annually, with a 10% premium charged

  • Rationalise and simplify duty categories

  • Rationalise pricing structures such that the minimum price for a fossil fuelled car or light commercial vehicle is greater than that of a zero emission vehicle

However, the Tynwald motion also makes clear future intentions such as moving cars and light commercial vehicles that were registered on the island before April1 2010 to weight based duty, deleting the engine capacity based duty categories. The DoI also wants to transfer all HGVs, minibuses, buses, coaches onto weight based duty, deleting the current complex pricing structure and provide for the increase of duty rates by the application of inflation each year.

And in 2025, it plans to transfer all remaining vehicles on to the weight based duty, deleting the emissions based categories and transfer zero emission vehicles onto weight based duty, initially discounted by up to 50%, but with a reducing discount until 2028 when duty will be payable as per any other vehicle on the weight based system.

At the time of writing, the petition had attracted 4,370 signatures.