UPDATED: £25 Congestion Charge before Election?

Election 2008Editor

As we reported earlier today, Ken Livingstone rebutted the charges against his administration put by Martin Bright of the New Statesman in that same organ.

In that same article Ken Livingstone officially announced that he was in the final stages of implementing the £25 congestion charge. The Guardian's analysis is below:

Livingstone unveiled his plans for a £25-a-day congestion charge for the heaviest 4x4 vehicles when he launched a consultation process on it more than a year ago. But he appears to have timed it so he will be in a position to announce firm plans as the mayoral contest is intensifying.

"A key issue at the election is my proposal for a £25-a-day charge for the most CO2-emitting vehicles entering the congestion-charging zone and, after consultation, I will be able to take a decision on this in the coming month."

This move is similar to the effective referendum he posed on his rule when introducing the first tranche of the Congestion Charge and sets likely to define his re-election effort this time around also. Boris Johnson has yet to reply to this proposal, though he favours scrapping the Western extension, whilst Brian Paddick holds woolly positions on both issues.

UPDATE: The Guardian has a brief summary of the implications of the £25 charge here.