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A week in ULEZ: Huge figures raked in, Tory MP bids to overturn expansion, Khan’s ads are misleading according to ASA and just two people charged with criminal damage after cameras vandalised

By Tom Gibson | December 5, 2023

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The soap opera that is the ULEZ expansion continues to make headlines and we’ve got a summary for you here.

A week in ULEZ: Huge figures raked in, Tory MP bids to overturn expansion, Khan’s ads are misleading according to ASA and just two people charged with criminal damage after cameras vandalised

Sadiq Khan’s ULEZ expansion generated an extra £5.3m in its first week of business, new figures have revealed.

Data shows the expansion of the boundary from just inner London to cover the full Greater London area meant more than 425,000 cars were hit with penalties in the first seven days, up from 140,000 the week before.

You can check if your car is compliant within the expanded ULEZ zone here.

These eye-watering sums have left many residents and politicians furious, with Tory MP Gareth Johnson launching a bid to overturn the expansion in parliament this week.

Mr Johnson, who is the MP for Dartford, said: 'This is an unfair stealth tax on the people of Dartford and across the south east, hitting the poorest the hardest. The London Mayor, Sadiq Khan has no mandate for this. 

'Expanding ULEZ was not in his manifesto or in his transport strategy and the consultation on the expansion showed that people did not want it. It impacts people in Kent and other counties around London who cannot vote in or out the London Mayor. It is taxation without accountability.

'It punishes those on lower incomes who can least afford to buy a newer car to avoid the daily charge. There are also no guarantees the standard for meeting the ULEZ threshold will not be changed in the future to include more vehicles.

'My proposed bill is to overturn the ULEZ expansion and ensure the London Mayor cannot impose this unfair tax on the people of Dartford and beyond.'

Unless the bill gets government support it will be unlikely to pass and it doesn’t appear public support for the scheme is likely to grow anytime soon.

That’s despite ads being placed on radio and in newspapers that the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) said included 'misleading' claims about the expansion reducing levels of nitrogen dioxide (NO2).

The ASA’s report, which is yet to be published, will say Khan 'did not clarify' claims NO2 levels had 'reduced by nearly half' as a result of ULEZ and that his figures were based on 'estimates or modelled scenarios' and not 'actual figures'. 

It’s not the first time Khan and City Hall have been accused of being misleading the public over ULEZ. In fact, we wrote a story on falsehoods, lies and misrepresented figures back in August of this year.

There continues to be a large number of people who are happy to take the law into their own hands when it comes to fighting against the ‘stealth tax’, with 987 records of cameras being vandalised or stolen between April and October of this year.

Despite those alarming numbers, just five people have been arrested and two have been charged.

A statement from the force said: 'The Met continues to treat criminal activity in relation to ULEZ seriously and has deployed considerable resources to our operation.

'Where there are possible lines of enquiry, local investigators will follow up using a range of investigative approaches including CCTV trawls, witness searches and an assessment of forensic opportunities.'

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