Let the voting begin.
Ballots asking voters whether they support a 0.5-per-cent sales tax to go towards transportation and transit improvements for the region are now in the mail.
It’s the final step in a years-long battle to decide how to generate the $250-million per year required to fund the region’s share of Metro Vancouver mayors’ transportation and transit plan.
The $7.5-billion plan the Mayors’ Council crafted last June tries to offer something for every resident and every part of the region to keep local councils on side and appeal for votes.
The 0.5-per-cent regional sales tax proposed to pay for it, dubbed the Metro Vancouver Congestion Improvement Tax, effectively raises the Provincial Sales Tax charged in the region to 7.5 per cent.
The Congestion Improvement Tax is estimated to raise $250 million a year, which would fund the region’s share of the projects, with the rest to come from the provincial and federal governments.
Households will begin receiving the ballots as early as today, and voters have until May 29 to return them.
To help readers make an informed choice, Black Press has launched a special series that will run throughout the voting process:
▶ Referendum Questions, a special Black Press series, will examine the various issues surrounding the transit referendum over the coming weeks.
For more stories in this series, visit http://www.bclocalnews.com/news/296273001.html