Proposed changes to Road Equivalent Tariff (RET) for commercial vehiclesThe horrendous impact of these price increases of up to 175% will make the small savings on the pseudo-RET scheme look like small chage.
The Outer Hebrides Transport Group (OHTG) has recently been formed with the aim of working together to fight the Governments decision to remove RET for commercial vehicles from island ferries.
The OHFG would like to hear your views on how it will affect your business, your customers and the economy of the Outer Hebrides.
Please contact Gail Robertson, Co-ordinator of Outer Hebrides Transport Group
Tel: 01870 602916
Mobile: 07919 622377
The 'extension' and the 'permanance' of RET has been announced in glorious technicolour by the Government, the MSP and the MP on a number of occasions, Without a concrete promise of implementation, far less an implementation date.
The penalising of everyone who relies on the freight traffic has been introduced immediately.
David Wood, owner of Lewis haulage firm, Woody’s Express said: “This proposal from the SNP Government is economically illiterate and will have a devastating impact on the islands. The Scottish Government sneaked out this massive price hike without the courtesy of consulting any of those who will be affected.This will have the impact of making all the incoming food deliveries, all the fish and shellfish exports, tweed exports and every other product coming from the islands much more expensive. Indeed, the much vaunted designation of Arnish as a centre for renewables will be undermined by this very policy.
Our MP briefly spoke out against the policy (after being severely bollocked in Barra by businessmen), before being gagged by his own party, whilst our MSP seemingly has no view on the matter. None of the would be SNP Council candidates has had anything to say on the matter - with one notable isolated exception - despite their planned campaign slogan of "Fighting for the Islands". The slogan is now being changed to "Tutting quietly, as instructed, in the islands."
One major area of concern is the inter-island commercial traffic, which is likely to be decimated by this increase. One businessman has told me that he will now turn back to the mainland, rather than locally, as it is going to be more efficient overall. 10-20 years of hard work developing the inter-island business destroyed by a Government who say one thing and do another behind your back..
Now the Council and sitting Councillors need to get behind this campaign, which has the potential for inflicting serious economic damage to the islands.
Remind me again how this SNP integrated transport strategy works?