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​Gov't receives request for North South Highway toll increase, up to 31 per cent

Published:Wednesday | August 16, 2017 | 12:00 AM

The Government has received a request for an up to 31 per cent increase in toll rate for the North South Highway, which is to take effect September 9.

Minister of Transport and Mining Mike Henry in a media release this afternoon said he received the final application from the operators of the toll road.

According to the Concession Agreement, the minister is obliged to consider the proposed rates increases, even as he seeks dialogue with them.

Henry has written to the operators requesting a meeting to begin dialogue as soon as possible.

The minister stated that it is important that the current state of the economy be taken into consideration, if the operations of the toll road are to be sustainable.

However, he is quick to point out that the operators are well within their rights to seek the level of increases outlined in their application and they are aware that the risk of any fallout in its utilisation by motorists, is totally theirs and not that of the Jamaican taxpayers.

Under the proposed new rates, operators of:

Class 1 vehicles from Caymanas to Mamee Bay, could face a 17 per cent increase,

Class 2 Operators 17 per cent,

Class 3 Operators 16 per cent,

Class 4 Operators 19 per cent (motor cycles) for the same leg.

The average percentage proposed adjustment will be 17.6 per cent while the highest percentage adjustment will be 31 per cent for Class 4 vehicles travelling from Caymanas to Angels.

The lowest proposed adjustment will be 14 per cent for Class 1 vehicles travelling from Caymans to Angels and Class 4 vehicles travelling from Angels to Linstead and vice versa.

Details of the proposed adjustments will be published in the local newspapers tomorrow and the public has five days to respond. In the meantime Minister Henry says the government will not renege from its responsibility to ensure that the alternate routes are maintained to highest acceptable standard and in that regard his ministry will be working closely with the National Works Agency.