Bikers Not Cash Cows

Bikers Not Cash Cows

MAG asks the next Government to remove motorcycles from the scope of all local charging regimes for congestion and air quality management and introduce proportionality to national taxation for motorcycles.

At a local level, taxation of motorcycling is most often justified as a method to change behaviours to promote sustainability.  It takes the form of charging schemes to reduce congestion, air pollutant emissions or greenhouse gas emissions.  The policies often fail to differentiate between cars and motorcycles.  Examples such as the London Ultra Low Emission Zone apply the same charge for cars and motorcycles deemed to exceed emission standards, or in the case of Oxford’s Zero Emission Zone, all vehicles that produce any tailpipe CO2 emissions, face charges regardless of embedded carbon.

MAG calls for any new Government to follow the example set by Transport Scotland, whose published guidance on Low Emission Zones specifically recommends that motorcycles and mopeds are scoped out of LEZ schemes unless a local authority can provide a robust justification for their inclusion.

Motorcycles demonstrably reduce congestion and improve air quality. MAG’s report Powered Two Wheelers: An Air Quality Solution lays out the evidence in depth.

The ‘one size fits all’ approach of seeking to manage motorcycles the same way as cars is illogical.

At a national level, current Vehicle Excise Duty is unfair and disproportionate for motorcycles.  This results from an inconsistent approach for different vehicle classes.  Cars are currently charged based on tailpipe CO2 emissions while motorcycles are charged based on engine capacity.  This results in an illogical and unfair system where smaller, less polluting motorcycles are more heavily taxed than large polluting cars.  MAG calls for a simplified and consistent weight-based structure for all vehicle classes.

With the diminishing revenue expected from Fuel Duty there is potential that a future Government will seek to replace current VED and Fuel Duty with a national pay-per-mile system.  MAG asks Government to ensure that any resultant system is fair, simple and consistent – based purely on vehicle weight and distance travelled.

Vehicle Excise Duty or any proposed alternative national Road Pricing must be fair and proportionate. This is only likely to be delivered by a government prepared to Move on Motorcycling.

MAG is asking riders in the UK to get creative in their approach to placing motorcycling in the general election discourse.  The ‘Act Now’ page recently added to the MAG website offers a template letter for riders to use when asking candidates for their views on motorcycling issues. Please visit the ACT NOW page now to see how you can get involved.

If you have never been a MAG member, have let your membership lapse, or are thinking you need to save some money by not renewing this year, we would love you to join, re-join or stay with us. If, like us, you are passionate about motorcycling, want to see motorcycling continue in the future, and want to preserve all that you love about it, we hope it will be an easy choice to make. MAG’s strength is in numbers. The riding community can demonstrate strength when it unites. If you want to say you played your part to defend motorcycling, please… join MAG today