Inspired this time by:
NatPost Jan 27/2017 Chris Selley: Wynne’s spineless attempts to save her job drown out Toronto’s courage on road tolls
Your analysis of Mayor Tory’s political betrayal by the Premier is very good.
May I suggest that the idea of taxing non-ratepayer road users to fund rebuilding the roads that they are using – dedicated taxes or user fees- is to be commended.
But the tolls on DVP/Gardiner were not to be used only for those roads, they were destined for general revenue.
May I also suggest that the only way for Toronto (and all Canadian cities) to survive fiscally is with its share (currently going to the province) of the Income Tax.
The Toronto/ typical city residents’ income tax currently gets collected by the Confederal and provincial govts and then some of it gets trickled back those cities (and the rest is re-distributed according to the vote-buying priorities of the senior levels of administration)
What must happen is for cities to become provinces (responsible for local and private matters in accordance with the idea expressed in s.92 of the Constitution/BNA’s Distribution of powers).
Look at an 1867 map.
Look at how small (and local) the 4 provinces are.
But after 1905 when the western provinces were granted territory as large as European countries, who could stop Ontario and Quebec from demanding all the land to the north of their “local” fiefdom.
But 1905 and 1912 is a long time ago – maybe at that time, the idea of huge provinces with sparse populations outside of densely-populated cities was not conceivable.
But that is our current population distribution situation.
Also in 1867, 1905 and 1912 no one was accounting for a system to fund a universal healthcare system.
In addition at those times there was no income tax at all.
So if none of the fundamental changes that were made to our “private and local ” administrations were anticipated in 1867 AND none of those changes were made with (sufficient and/or dedicated) funding mechanism, why do we keep tinkering with an administration system that no longer suits its population distribution nor its most-expensive programs and cannot fund the quite anticipate-able repair/replacement costs of its infrastructure?
Make Greater Golden Horseshoe a province ( the boundary will be the “height of land” that divides the watershed ) and it now has its own income tax and can pay its own way.
Simultaneously all the laws and regs devised to address Big City Toronto problems can be lifted from the backs of Small Town Ontario.
No doubt this financial freedom will appeal to the next-largest Canadian cities too … but I dare not comment on the applicability of the idea to anywhere other than my locality.
It must be done. It’s inevitable. Tell John Tory to do another “mega city-style” plebiscite.
Also see Point #4 London Centre 2006