Alternative options for funding a second harbour crossing will be considered today when the council meets to discuss the next steps for Auckland's critical transport projects.
Alternative options for funding the City Rail Link, Penlink, rail to the airport and the East-West Link will also be discussed.
Mayor Len Brown says if and when these projects proceed, Auckland will be required to fund part of the cost alongside government contributions.
"Auckland Council is considering a number of funding options which can be used instead of loading all the burden on to Aucklanders' rates bill," he says.
Earlier this year a discussion document was released for consultation titled Getting Auckland Moving.
Eight-five per cent of the 161 submitters felt congestion in Auckland is unacceptable and 80 per cent felt additional funds are needed to address the problem. The five most preferred options were tolling on new roads, regional fuel taxes, congestion charging, development contributions and additional car parking charges.
Mr Brown says as tolling of new roads and development contributions are permissible under existing legislation, it was felt they did not require the same level of investigation.
The report proposes that further investigation of the three funding mechanisms take place with the aim of taking a funding proposal to government in 12 months recommending relevant legislation be changed.
A consultative working group comprising council, government, community organisations, business and transport groups will be set up to consider and develop the proposals.
Submitters' least favoured options were tax increment funding, targeted rates on city centre properties, general rates on all properties and network charging across the entire roading network.
Public-private partnerships, sale of council assets, infrastructure bonds, a poll tax and an Auckland transport lottery were other suggestions made by submitters.
Mr Brown says he remains open-minded to a number of funding options.
"What is certain, however, is that council must consider new ways to fund these major transport projects in a way which is affordable and fair for Aucklanders."
Alternative funding options are required because Auckland faces a $10-15 billion funding gap between its future transport needs and what rates and taxes can cover.
"Auckland's congestion will significantly worsen as the region's population continues to surge," he says.
"Auckland and the government need to invest in a mix of road and rail projects to provide the region with a transport system which will cope with a population of two million plus."
Mr Brown says Aucklanders will be given the chance to have their say before any final decisions are made.
"It is important that we develop fair and affordable funding options for further consideration," Mr Brown says.
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