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Voting on road congestion policy

  • Russo, Antonio

This paper studies the political economy of urban traffic policy. A city council and a regional government (representing city and suburbs) decide respectively on parking fees and a road toll. Both charges are below the optimum when median voters in city and suburbs prefer cars to public transport sufficiently more than the average. Even if the city government would set an optimal road toll, the regional government blocks it when the median suburban voter prefers cars strongly enough. Letting the city control parking and road pricing may therefore increase chances of adoption of the latter. However, if the city controls parking and the region road pricing, the combined charges are higher than if the city controlled them both. Hence, when voters want all charges below the optimum, the involvement of two governments may be desirable. We also find that earmarking road pricing revenues for public transport is welfare-enhancing, compared to lump-sum redistribution, only if they are topped up by extra funds granted to the city by a higher level of government.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Regional Science and Urban Economics.

Volume (Year): 43 (2013)
Issue (Month): 5 ()
Pages: 707-724

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Handle: RePEc:eee:regeco:v:43:y:2013:i:5:p:707-724
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/regec

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  1. Ubbels, Barry & Verhoef, Erik T., 2008. "Governmental competition in road charging and capacity choice," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(2), pages 174-190, March.
  2. De Borger Bruno & Dunkerley Fay & Proost Stef, 2006. "Strategic investment and pricing decisions in a congested transport corridor," Energy, Transport and Environment Working Papers Series ete0602, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Centrum voor Economische Studiën, Energy, Transport and Environment.
  3. Eva Gutierrez-i-Puigarnau & Jos van Ommeren, 2009. "Labour Supply and Commuting: Implications for Optimal Road Taxes," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 09-008/3, Tinbergen Institute.
  4. De Donder, Philippe & Le Breton, Michel & Peluso, Eugenio, 2010. "Majority Voting in Multidimensional Policy Spaces: Kramer-Shepsle versus Stackelberg," CEPR Discussion Papers 7646, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. Marcucci, Edoardo & Marini, Marco A. & Ticchi, Davide, 2005. "Road pricing as a citizen-candidate game," European Transport \ Trasporti Europei, ISTIEE, Institute for the Study of Transport within the European Economic Integration, issue 31, pages 28-45.
  6. Arnott, Richard & Inci, Eren, 2006. "An integrated model of downtown parking and traffic congestion," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(3), pages 418-442, November.
  7. Bruno DE BORGER & Stef PROOST, 2010. "A political economy model of road pricing," Center for Economic Studies - Discussion papers ces10.20, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Centrum voor Economische Studiën.
  8. repec:ucp:bkecon:9781884829987 is not listed on IDEAS
  9. Gans, Joshua S. & Smart, Michael, 1996. "Majority voting with single-crossing preferences," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 59(2), pages 219-237, February.
  10. Bonsall, Peter & Young, William, 2010. "Is there a case for replacing parking charges by road user charges?," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 17(5), pages 323-334, September.
  11. Gutiérrez-i-Puigarnau, Eva & van Ommeren, Jos, 2010. "Labour Supply and Commuting," IZA Discussion Papers 4798, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  12. Hutlkrantz, Lars & Armelius, Hanna, 2005. "The Politico-Economic Link Between Public Transport And Road Pricing: An Ex-Ante Study Of The Stockholm Road-Pricing Trial," Working Papers 2005:8, Örebro University, School of Business.
  13. Parry, I. W. H., 2002. "Comparing the efficiency of alternative policies for reducing traffic congestion," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 85(3), pages 333-362, September.
  14. André de Palma & Fay Dunkerley & Stef Proost, 2006. "Trip chaining: who wins who loses?," Center for Economic Studies - Discussion papers ces0607, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Centrum voor Economische Studiën.
  15. King, David & Manville, Michael & Shoup, Donald, 2007. "The political calculus of congestion pricing," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 14(2), pages 111-123, March.
  16. Arnott, Richard & de Palma, Andre & Lindsey, Robin, 1993. "A Structural Model of Peak-Period Congestion: A Traffic Bottleneck with Elastic Demand," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(1), pages 161-79, March.
  17. King, David & Manville, Michael & Shoup, Donald, 2007. "The political calculus of congestion pricing," University of California Transportation Center, Working Papers qt9js9z8gz, University of California Transportation Center.
  18. Winslott-Hiselius, Lena & Brundell-Freij, Karin & Vagland, Asa & Byström, Camilla, 2009. "The development of public attitudes towards the Stockholm congestion trial," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 43(3), pages 269-282, March.
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