By Matt Dennien
Brisbane City Council will review the fine print of its Go Between Bridge toll credit scheme after residents found even utes and vans being used in a private capacity were being excluded despite the council’s insistence otherwise.
The subsidy was rolled out alongside the closure of nearby Victoria Bridge to general traffic in late January as part of the $1.2 billion Brisbane Metro project to help residents south of the CBD with the potential increased cost of crossing the river.
But soon after applying, some residents found they were unable to access the credit because terms and conditions meant only vehicles considered a passenger car or motorcycle under state registration were eligible.
Emails to residents and the Gabba ward office from the council’s transport network operations team, seen by Brisbane Times told, highlighted this excluded all vehicles registered as “light commercial/van”.
This was despite infrastructure committee chair David McLachlan insisting the scheme, which fewer than 1000 people had applied for, extended to utes and vans provided they were used for non-commercial reasons.
Cr McLachlan has now conceded that due to the Transport and Main Roads Department vehicle classifications, some residents were unable to access the subsidy.
“Council is reviewing these conditions and, in the interim, has already begun ensuring affected eligible residents receive their toll credit as soon as possible,” he said.
Those in the 4101 postcode suburbs of Highgate Hill, South Brisbane and West End could be granted the $100 annual credit, which would be added to their Linkt account and reviewed each year for a maximum of four years. The council then pays this subsidy to administrator Transurban.
Despite calls from Transport Minister Mark Bailey for the scheme to also be extended to those with less than six months on their tenancy agreements in the renter-heavy suburb, Cr McLachlan said there would be no change to that condition.
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