New charges take toll on Qld heavy vehicles

Queensland toll charges rise by almost 10 percent for heavy vehicles from July 1

By Brad Gardner

Heavy vehicles travelling through Queensland tolls will be slugged with new fees from July 1, with some charges rising by almost 10 percent.

The Kuraby and Heathwood-Paradise road tolls on the Logan and Gateway Extension motorways have jumped by 33 cents from $4.50 to $4.83.

The changes represent a 7.3 percent rise, while the toll at Loganlea has increased by 27 cents, or 8.43 percent, from $3.20 to $3.47.

Heavy vehicles using the Gateway Bridge will now need to pay $7.36 instead of $7.20.

In a letter released to its customers earlier this month, Queensland Motorways—the group responsible for running the tolls—said the increases were due to a government decision to link fees with the Consumer Price Index (CPI).

The Bligh Government has also introduced "CPI catch-ups", which have contributed to the price rises.

"This will bring Queensland in line with the practice of other Australian states and see toll costs reflect their true value," the letter from Queensland Motorways reads.

The Government has already applied CPI catch-ups on heavy vehicles in 2008 and 2009, with another round of fees to come in next year.

"Following the catch-ups and increases in 2011, CPI increases will be applied annually," the letter says.

However, heavy vehicles will be hit with a one-off 50 cent increase in 2011 to cover the costs of moving Queensland tolls from a manual to automatic system.

Small trucks and cars will pay a one-off fee of 25 cents.

The toll on the Gateway Bridge for small trucks and cars will rise 5 cents to $2.95, with the Heathwood and Paradise Road toll increasing 10 cents to $2.10.

This coincides with a 7 cent increase at the Kuraby toll and a 2 cent decrease at Loganlea.

The new toll charges take effect alongside a 3.2 percent increase in heavy vehicle registration charges.
B-double operators will be the worst affected, with registration fees rising by $2884.

Furthermore, the Rudd Government last week decided to increase the road user charge by 0.7 cents, which will cut the fuel tax credit to 16.44 cents a litre.

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