April 24, 2014

A Survey, a Referendum and an Agenda: Links

From USA Today:

More than half the adults between ages 18 and 34 questioned about transportation said they would consider moving to another city if it had more and better options for getting around, according to the survey conducted for the Rockefeller Foundation and Transportation for America.

In all, 66% said access to high quality transportation is one of the top three criteria they would weigh when deciding where to live.

And nearly half of the young adult vehicle owners surveyed agreed they would seriously consider giving up their car if they could count on a range of transportation options.

Okay, another survey that reports on the generational shift underway.  But some decision-makers don’t hear it or believe it.  Maybe this interpretation might help:

“Young people are the key to advancing innovation and economic competitiveness in our urban areas, and this survey reinforces that cities that don’t invest in effective transportation options stand to lose out in the long-run,” said Michael Myers, a managing director at The Rockefeller Foundation.

In the next few weeks, the Mayor’s Council will send their report to the Minister of Transportation, who in turn will be asked to specify the taxes the Province will be prepared to entertain – and the question that will follow for the referendum.  From this process we’ll get a pretty good idea as to whether the Province – the Premier in particular – cares whether it passes.

And more particularly, whether the Premier whose election commitment was economic growth and jobs believes that an effectively functioning transportation system for the Metro Vancouver region is critical for the success of that agenda.


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    1. Slightly misleading headline. How about: excessive wages and benefits with no teachers’ evaluation leaves many young teachers unemployed and pupil-to-teacher ratio too high, as too many incompetent teacher remain in overpaid and underperforming positions.

  1. No one doubts the needs for improved transit and additional investment.

    The question is: where is the money coming from ? Even higher taxes to inefficiently run quasi-public institutions like TransLink or cities which have excessive staffing with excessive wages and benefits, or are there perhaps other ways to fund this ?

    Clearly the high-spend and overpaying cities in MetroVan are on a collision course here with a no-debt, tax-reduction, small-government-is-better provincial leadership !

    MetroVan needs to come clean on its high union wages, staff levels and benefits packages before they ask for more money from overtaxed citizens.

    Proposed Mayors Council’s funding strategy here: http://mariaharris.ca/blog/2014/04/update-on-10-year-regional-transportation-plan/#more-74

    A higher sales tax make no sens whatsoever to me.

    What does make sense is higher car registration fees and road tolling, but only in conjunction with wage constraints in the many city halls across this region, coupled with a reduction in the number of city halls, btw, too ! 25+ municipalities in MetroVan: give me a break ! Much room for savings here !

    1. Except that when the big Toronto amalgamation took place costs went UP. Closer to home the amalgamation of Abbotsford and Matsqui led to huge tax increases for the people whose former municipality had run a tight ship while their amalgamation partner had run up a huge debt. Big, unresponsive bureaucracies are the only guaranteed outcome of amalgamation.