North-South Highway users could pay up to 31% more come September 9

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

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KINGSTON, Jamaica — Motorists travelling on the North South link of Highway 2000 could pay as much as 31 per cent more if the proposed adjustments are approved.

Minister of Transport and Mining, Lester 'Mike' Henry, said he is now in receipt of the proposed toll rates, which are to become effective on September 9.

Under the proposed new rates, operators of class one and class two vehicles from Caymanas to Mamee Bay are facing a 17 per cent increase, while class three operators face 16 per cent and class four motorists could pay 19 per cent more for the same leg.

The average percentage proposed adjustment would be 17.6 per cent while the highest percentage adjustment would be 31 per cent for class four vehicles travelling from Caymanas to Angels.

The lowest proposed adjustment would be 14 per cent for class one vehicles travelling from Caymans to Angels and class four vehicles travelling from Angels to Linstead and vice versa.

According to Henry, under the Concession Agreement, he is obliged to consider the final application from the toll operators, noting that he wrote to them requesting a meeting to begin dialogue as soon as possible.

Henry said 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 was 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 fall out in its utilisation by motorists is totally theirs and not that of the Jamaican taxpayers.

Details of the proposed adjustments will be published in the local newspapers tomorrow and the public has five days to respond.

In the meantime, Henry said the Government will not renege from its responsibility to ensure that the alternative routes are maintained to highest acceptable standard and in that regard his ministry will be working closely with the National Works Agency (NWA).

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