EDITORIAL: Stone-y silence
The region’s mayors got a dressing down this week from Transportation Minister Todd Stone.
It would seem that Attila the Hun is more of a pushover than Stone, who is not prepared to share Lower Mainland proceeds from the provincial carbon tax with TransLink for road and transit improvements because of concerns it would negate his government’s promise to make the tax revenue-neutral.
But he’s game to let the mayors go to the voters on another, different, carbon tax, or hike property taxes — big surprise, pushing an unpopular decision on to a lower level of government — further to fill their funding gap.
As for other ways of raising dough, such as mobility pricing (making people pay more for driving further), or getting more money from the feds, he was also lukewarm, suggesting the mayors’ reach either exceeded their grasp or that they needed to do more homework on their proposal.
Thus, developing a suitable referendum question will likely be put off until the fall.
They needn’t look for any help from the province, though. All they’re likely to get is a Stone-y stare.