Dear Resident of Metro Vancouver, As one of the 25 to 32 per cent of registered voters who is actually bothering to cast a ballot in this municipal election, your participation in this transit referendum is important to us. You may be aware that transit funding is a crucial issue. Translink, the body that governs Metro Vancouver transit, would like to increase service hours and embark on new projects to improve transit service across the region.
There has been little agreement on how proposed improvements should be funded.
Please consider carefully the following statements and indicate whether you agree or disagree:
1) I am in favour of increasing the funding to Translink to pay for transit improvements.
2) I am not in favour of increasing funding to Translink because they will only waste the money like they always do with their inflated salaries, fancy suits, executive lunches and their highfalutin’ ways.
3) An increase in the gas tax is the best way to pay for transit service because it could result in a future shift to more sustainable forms of transportation and reduce greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs).
4) An increase in the gas tax is a stupid way to pay for transit because it penalizes people who don’t even use transit and takes money out of the pockets of hard workin’ British Columbians who are just tryin’ to get home to spend a little more time to do whatnot with their families.
5) A transportation improvement fee (TIF) of $24 should be levied on all registered vehicles, which would result in $29-million in new annual revenue for Translink.
5a) The fee should be based on the make, model, engine displacement, and fuel efficiency of the registered vehicle.
6) A transportation improvement fee (TIF) is an even dumber idea than raising the gas tax.
6a) Basing the fee on the make, model, engine displacement, and fuel efficiency of the car discriminates against people who drive real cars instead of hybrids and such, and makes them pay for transit that they’re not even riding.
7) The province should redirect revenues from the carbon tax to transit improvements, which will result in lower GHG emissions.
8) The province should get rid of the carbon tax because it costs me money and global warming is a liberal hoax.
9) Although it is not a transportation demand-management tool, an average $23 annual increase in property tax would result in an additional $29-million in revenue for Translink. Property taxes should be increased to help fund improved transit services.
10) The value of my house has nothing to do with how much tax I can afford to pay. I’m already treading water over here, what with the municipal tax increase and the hydro going up and MSP premiums and Netflix and all that.
11) The province should include major road improvement projects such as the Massey Tunnel replacement, the construction of the new Port Mann Bridge and the widening of Highway One in future referenda on funding transportation improvements.
12) Major road and bridge improvements should be funded by everyone, since it means that traffic moves faster, and the people who don’t use them should just shut up. And “referenda” isn’t even a word.
13) Tolls and road pricing play a major role in transportation-demand management. Tolls should be increased and implemented on a more equitable, region-wide basis.
14) Tolls suck everywhere, but the bus is full of hobos.
15) A portion of transit funding should be designated for cycling improvements, such as dedicated bike lanes and improved greenways.
16) You’re kidding, right?
17) There are two kinds of people in the world: us and them.
18) Promise made, promise delivered.
Thank you for taking the time to reply. Please keep in mind your answers are non-binding.
Follow me on Twitter: @cbcstephenquinnReport Typo/Error