Proposed TTC fare hike works out to pretty much the same amount as cutting the vehicle registration tax
Rob Ford’s first budget as mayor says a lot about where the city is heading over the next four years. The list of cuts announced this morning reads as if it was designed to make the already-stark division between the downtown and the inner suburbs worse. Case in point: the mayor and his allies have cut the $60-per-year Personal Vehicle Tax while pondering a fare hike for the TTC that would come to, you guessed it, $60 per year for each TTC customer. Looks like the war on the car is over. And the car won.
The optics of having transit commuters pay so that motorists can avoid 0.7 per cent of the cost of car ownership are so bad it’s hard to imagine this is serious. (Up next in Toronto: user fees on recycling to pay for a new landfill?) If the fare hike turns out to be reversed, as Ford and Karen Stintz are saying they hope to, that would be welcome—but it still wouldn’t change the fact that car owners are getting a break while TTC riders, who already got a $120 per year fare hike in 2010, shell out twice what motorists had to pay.
It’s not like this is terribly surprising—Ford made his priorities clear during the election, and if David Miller was perceived (rightly or wrongly) as favouring the core at the expense of the suburbs, it looks like the downtown needs to get used to being on the outside looking in.
One thing that shouldn’t be missed though is that all of this is 100 per cent the mayor’s doing. When even the budget chief Mike Del Grande tells the Globe and Mail that he was shut out of the budget-making process, it should be clear that nothing important is happening at city Hall without the mayor’s say-so. When the inevitable complaints about service cuts or user fees come in, Ford is going to have nobody to share the blame with.
• Ford to balance books with no new taxes, no big service cuts [Globe and Mail]
• TTC fare hike: Riders lose what motorists gained [Toronto Star]
• Ford hints at TTC fare hike; budget cuts revealed [Toronto Star]
• Rob Ford’s spending plan unveiled: Toronto on track for TTC fare hike [Globe and Mail]
12 thoughts on “Proposed TTC fare hike works out to pretty much the same amount as cutting the vehicle registration tax”
Yeah, the same except the TTC fare hike money will go directly to the TTC and not to city coffers.
The TTC is the most expensive system in Canada, one of the most expensive in North America & one of the worst run operations anywhere. Seniors and disabled persons should have been exempted from this rise in fares. Ford’s crocodile tears over this were pathetic to hear on air & it’s disgraceful that he won’t even own the responsibility for it.
TTC service in this city will not improve, nor will the cleanliness of the stations or customer service – that’s what we were told with the last fare increase last year. Seniors trying to get to a doctor’s appointment or visit a friend will be deciding whether to they can afford to take a bus or buy groceries. Perhaps Mr Ford would like to donate the use of his car and driver to someone who is living below the poverty line & having to find a way to travel in TO.
And this is only the start of his tenure.
Well said Carolyn! Ironically, today I hear people on one of the TV shows call in program talk about the tax break for your metropass, how you can take it to almost brampton and the airport etc etc.. Are these people smoking dope?!! U pay $2.25 on New York city subway and you can sit for 2 hours over the New York Area with a transit system that runs 24 hours for the people!
The TTC is not funded the same way that NYC or any other major North American city. Elsewhere Federal and provincial funding gives a way larger share. whereas T.O. is pretty much from the Fares. Government needs to fund public transit.
Jeremy, why do we always find faults/excuse as to why things cant change or be done differently in TO versus excuses- TTC is not funded same as NY. Who cares ? Can we stop for once and look at the inefficiency of the TTC – whether federally or provincially funded ? Have you ever heard of this awful TTC laying off 1 person ? instead our fares go up,service gets worse, they contonue to hire and not train people on basic customer service standard, if it is funded by the city, then look at the entire city budget and make adjustment accordingly – PROPERTY TAXES!! Do you really think it makes any sense to have a same size house in Ajax & pickering & missiaauga with a tax base 56% more than in the big smoke called TORONTO?! Come on people!!
“if David Miller was perceived (rightly or wrongly) as favouring the core at the expense of the suburbs, it looks like the downtown needs to get used to being on the outside looking in”
Er, have you seen the routes being cut? None of them will affect us downtowners but a heck of a lot of them feed to subway stations in Scarborough and Etobicoke.
This is not downtown v. suburbs. This is rich v. poor. Those poor seniors and suburbanites becomes the punch line because Rob Ford is fulfilling his campaign promise on their backs – after they voted for him – by eating into their already meager budgets and discontinuing lines in areas like Downsview (last I checked, Downsview is no where downtown). Basically, his hike won’t amount much to those of us making a certain level of income who live downtown. The hurt will be on seniors, disabled, poor and students. Big surprise! Ford, on this issue at least, turns out to take the classic pighead-conservative-rich-white-guy-on-top position. Maybe he’s learning now that a budget isn’t written with a magic wand and cutting something out means filling a void from somewhere else. I think David Miller sucked, would Ford essentially be flip side of the same coin?
TTC workes are way over paid for what they do… I know a group of people that work for TTC and joke about it all that time. Its sad. They are over paid and have no level of costomer service, because the answere to no one.
Ah123: this has nothing to do with rich vs. poor.
Service is adjusted all the time. This is no different. If you find that one particular route is not being underused or overused…you adjust accordingly. I ride a bus route every day and it has gone through a route reduction and it’s been that way for years until 2 years ago when they decided to increase it. Now they are reducing it again. I lived with reduced service once and I can live with it again. This has less to do with Ford as much as it has to do with the fact that they did increase service to several routes over the last couple of years…mine included and now are finding that they are losing money by operating at regular hours…simply not enough ridership. What will you do as a business if put in that position? Services reductions would have happened regardless of who is mayor.
A TTC fare hike was going to happen anyways. Fares have been increased at least once a year for the past few years. This has everything to do, though…with the way the TTC is operated, which is an age old problem. Lots of inefficiencies in the system and the ones inside the TTC, who could be changing things don’t care because it would cost them their own cushy situations.
As someone who both drives and takes the TTC…I had to deal with both a TTC fare increase AND the vehicle registration tax last year. This year, I only have to worry about a TTC fare increase. I hate that they have to increase fares but I am better off than last year.
do you own a property in Toronto? I’ve owned property in Mississauga and in Toronto. In Toronto, you pay a little less in property tax than the suburbs, but you have a huge land transfer tax and have to pay a premium to live in a city. Property owners in Toronto pay less tax because of economy of scale!
And the city you called “big smoke” is used by lots of suburbs people. Last time I check traffic is way higher on highway going to Toronto (from suburban getting into the city)in the morning, and vice versa at night. Do you really think that there is an easy solution?
we all share the road let us all pay for it, those entering from the city pay for what you use. you increase road congestion, wear and tear who pays…toronto tax payers…
I’m not sure why the author thinks the world owes him something. Why should vehicle owners be taxed an extra $60 to fund a transit system they don’t use. Vehicle owners pay for roads through gas tax, and most of that doesn’t ever get used on roads.
Why shouldn’t TTC users pay their own way? Why do you expect taxes from people that don’t even live in Toronto to fund the TTC? Why should a grape farmer from B.C. be paying for you to get to work? $3.00 to be driven anywhere in the city is a bargain. It costs me $10 in gas just to go play hockey, 3/4 of that is taxes. TTC users should quit their whining, they shouldn’t be relying on/expecting other people’s handouts to get to work. Raising fares to $5 still sounds like a good deal.
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