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Budapest congestion charge Gábor Demszky Gergely Karácsony Hungary István Tarlós News

Budapest congestion tax unavoidable, says new mayor

“Sooner or later, we will have to,” says Gergely Karácsony.

editor: REMIX NEWS
author: Bálint Bordács

Budapest will sooner or later have to introduce a congestion tax, mayor-elect Gergely Karácsony said Wednesday night on Hungarian television channel ATV.

“Sooner or later we will have to introduce a congestion tax in Budapest, this is unavoidable,” Karácsony said. As a joint candidate of the oppostion parties, he won the mayoral position of the Hungarian capital at the municipal elections this past Sunday, beating incumbent conservative mayor István Tarlós by 50 percent to 44 percent.

Despite growing pressure on him, Tarlós – who was at the helm of Budapest since 2010 – has resisted the introduction of congestion charge throughout his two consecutive mandates.

The congestion charge was a voluntary promise of previous Free Democrat mayor Gábor Demszky (in office between 1990 and 2010), in exchange for European Union grants to construct metro line 4.

During his campaign, Karácsony said he would only introduce a congestion charge if approved by a referendum.

Title image: Budapest mayor-elect Gergely Karácsony (source: zuglo.hu)