A letter that appeared in several lower mainland weeklies.
TransLink is bankrupt, but as every bureaucracy knows, the taxpayer can be forced to ante up; in Canada, higher taxes cures all ills.
TransLink may not know how to plan for affordable transit, but the ‘boys and girls in the ivory towers’ know how to spin a sad-sack story. Oh woe, we have to cut bus services to the bone, but never the bus services that very few use. Strange that.
“If we don’t get money, we will go back to the dark ages” is the wail from Mr. Prendergast, TransLink’s well paid CEO. Rubbish!
It was predicted nine years ago that TransLink would hit a financial ‘wall’, because planners insisted planning and building metro (SkyTrain) on routes that do not have the ridership to support them.
Funny, no one mentions that just the SkyTrain metro system is subsidized by over $200 million annually and more metro is being planned and built, which in turn will further increase the annual subsidy.
TransLink refuses to admit they are wrong (no one else builds with SkyTrain) and continue their bluff until they get a $150 annual car levy, to subsidize their incompetent and wastrel planning. It seems that regional mayors and politicians have been suckered by TransLink’s con-game.
Here is a solution.
A basic regional transit property tax of $150; cities with one metro line, the tax rises to $300; cities with two metro lines, the tax is $450 and cities with three metro lines, the transit tax would be $600. The higher property taxes for metro lines, reflects the investment in transit improvement enjoyed by those cities.
TransLink must do away with perks like car allowances and certainly rid themselves of their expensive spin doctors and other hangers-ons; in short, regional politicians must tell transonic to live within its means.
What politicians are not afraid to bell the cat?
Tags: Abbotsford, demonstration project, economic stimulus, Evergreen Line, Fraser River rail bridge, Fraser Valley, gateway, highway 1, infrastructure, interurban, light metro, light rail, LRT, passenger rail, Pattullo bridge, Port Mann, Port Mann Bridge, Rail for the Valley, skytrain, Surrey, transit, Translink, UBC SkyTrain, Vancouver