From the 1st of August, cars that pass in to and out of the innercity of Stockholm will be charged a special congestion tax. The discussion about a congestion tax in Stockholm has been going on for years and a test period was enforced the first six months of 2006. The test-period showed concrete results and it was decided to arrange a local referendum.
The referendum was arranged in the municipality of Stockholm parallel with the parliamentary elections 2006 and a majority voted yes. But the issue was highly controversial since it was clear that the people from the municipalities outside the inner-city would pay most of this tax. Therefore those municipalities arranged their own referendums with a clear ´no´ in each case.
The new government, who is perceived as more ´car-tolerant´ than the former government has been troubled by the issue, but finally declared that they would accept the referendum result from the municipality of Stockholm. This has caused strong critics from the municipalities around Stockholm which in many cases is governed by same centre-right alliance as the new national government.
The congestion tax is only due for Swedish registered cars that pass the city-border Monday-Friday between 06.30 am and 06.30 pm. No tax will be levied on public holidays, the day before a public holyday or during the month of July. According to the Swedish Road Administration, payments are made retroactively and must have been received within 14 days after the passage. The fee will vary between 10 and 20 SEK (appr. between 0,9 and 1,8 euro) for a passage depending on the time of the day.
For more info, see the homepage of the Swedish Road Administration www.vv.se, which has an English version.