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DfT criticised over lack of guidance on congestion scheme

Transport experts this week cast doubt on the Department for Transport's strategy to work up a national congestion charging scheme based on regional pilots.
They argued that no guidance is being given from government as to how regional schemes should work and expressed concerns that the public transport must be upgraded before congestion charging can be implemented.Transport secretary Doug Alexander has said that he will wait on the results of regional pilot schemes before launching a national scheme, as advocated in the Eddington report published this week.But the strategy was heavily criticised by transport experts at a road pricing debate held by the Institute of Public Policy Research in London this week. One transport consultant that spoke to NCE this week urged government to stop 'abdicating its responsibility' and set a 'national framework' for how the scheme would work.RAC Foundation executive director Edmund King called on the government to set up an independent body to work up a national scheme. 'I'm struggling to see how we are going to go from local schemes to a national scheme in 10 years,' he said. 'Motorists need to know how the scheme will work, but at the moment the government doesn't know.'

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