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Thursday, June 9, 2016

Cars subsidized by taxpayers in Toronto

Toronto Star : "Parking at 50¢ a shot is a great deal for individual beneficiaries but not so great for the city as it struggles to fund key programs and activities. When the city significantly under-prices parking it also encourages car use at the expense of objectives, such as promoting transit, improving physical fitness from walking and cycling, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions that cause climate change.

Some motorists will object to any proposal to increase the cost of driving, often asserting they already overpay for roads. While there’s no doubt motorists pay dearly to drive via car payments, insurance, and fuel this hardly justifies subsidizing (and thus hiding) the true cost of driving.

The assertion that motorists overpay for local roads is almost certainly false. For instance, a study, entitled “Whose Roads” by Canada’s Victoria Transport Policy Institute found cyclists and pedestrians — not motorists — overpay for local roads through general taxes. Anecdotally, even though I don’t own a car I pay as much in property taxes, which “fund most of the operating costs of roads,” according to the Residential and Civil Construction Alliance of Ontario, as my neighbours who own two and three cars."