Archive for November 19th, 2008

Now KKD threatened by ‘rain tax’

Wednesday, 19 November 2008

turek

A special train stops at Dzierzbin on a July evening in 2006. Photo BTWT archives.

A 20,000 PLN ‘rainwater tax’ demand from Turek Town Council’s Water and Drainage Department has caused SKPL bosses to contemplate the abandonment of the northern section of the Kaliska Kolej Dojazdowa (the Kalisz narrow gauge railway) which currently runs from the PKP interchange sidings at Opatowek to Turek. At a meeting with Krzysztof Nosal, the Chairman of Kalsz District Council, which took place yesterday, a number of long-term development options were discussed for the future of the railway including the availability of EU funding to upgrade the line and even the possibility of restoring the link back into Kalisz itself. In view of the tax demand from Turek, the option of abandoning the section which runs through the area administered by Turek District Council was also discussed.

Joined up thinking is never a strong point of governments, but when the Polish Government passed the Act on the Commercialisation, Restructuring and Privatisation of Railways, common sense was in short supply. The Act allows a local authority to take over an unused PKP railway subject to the condition that it will used for transport purposes, even if the railway runs through territories administered by other local authorities. Sadly while roads are exempt from local taxes, the new Act did not make the same exemptions for railways.