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Funding roads (taxes, user fees etc)
(02-01-2018, 02:45 PM)NotStan Wrote:
(02-01-2018, 02:22 PM)danbrotherston Wrote: This isn't the point though, at least not my point, we're considering how much the gas tax contributes, because it is the only money that could even be considered a user fee for roads.  

The same thing applies to cutting transit fares to zero.

By the way, it's worth noting that gas tax revenues are going to zero in the next ... maybe 30 years or so, given that electric cars are likely to be rapidly overtaking gas cars.  Unlike transit fares, which will probably remain, and drivers will continue to whine about how much they're subsidizing transit riders.

It's pretty much a lock that as the amount of tax raised from gas drops there will be a tax on electric vehicles to fill that gap.

I'm not sure what you mean by "a lock", but I see no guarantee.  Right now we're heavily subsidizing EVs, and the appetite for increasing taxes is zero.  Heck, the evidence from the past 20 years of stagnant gas tax rates, which between inflation and increasing fuel efficiency have decreased effective costs substantially, without replacement is pretty strong evidence that they won't be in a hurry to add a new tax.
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(02-01-2018, 02:38 PM)ijmorlan Wrote: I await with interest your ravings on the topic of why you think I am lying about this. Is somebody paying me? Am I an alien representative? Am I conducting an experiment on this particular message board for some reason? If you’re that sure, you must have at least a couple of potential hypotheses. Please don’t disappoint us. I don’t laugh enough most days.

Lol. No, I don't think its anything sinister like that. If it makes you feel better, I can rephrase "lie" as willful ignorance or you just being generally disingenuousness on this topic.
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Wired published an article this week about highway funding in the U.S.A. I generally trust their journalism (and also find them hilarious), and I found it interesting how they talked about not only how the funding for highways is not being covered by drivers, but also the many externalities of driving.
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(02-18-2018, 07:29 PM)MidTowner Wrote: Wired published an article this week about highway funding in the U.S.A. I generally trust their journalism (and also find them hilarious), and I found it interesting how they talked about not only how the funding for highways is not being covered by drivers, but also the many externalities of driving.

That was actually a really good article.  Of course, the comment threads are really telling as well, the typical protesting that of course drivers pay for all the costs of their habit, and also, that toll roads would be somehow bad and un-american.
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The best way to fund infrastructure is to tie it to defense.  That's why the United States highway system was modernized through the National Interstate and Defense Highways Act that among other things, connected all Air Force bases to a highway.  Going way back, Canada's own Canadian Pacific Railway got a boost when it proved that it could quickly move troops from Eastern Canada to Manitoba.

The system proposed by the Wired articles seems quite complex.  An easy first step would be simply to tax people when they renew their license plates.  Whenever you renew your plates, you have to report your vehicle's mileage.  Multiply the change in mileage by a certain rate, bill the user and you're done.  How to divide the money could be left for a later discussion.
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Wouldn't that create quite a shock to get a tax bill at the end of the year? I know that I would not be happy at all to be billed that way.
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You could spread the cost out across the year with estimates. If you pay your property taxes monthly they do a similar thing.
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We could also tax people when they renew their transit pass based on how much they used transit in the previous year!
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Plenty of transit systems already have distance-based fares (for instance, Go).
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You’re also assuming that people’s mileage is spent in-province. I bet 1/3 of my mileage is in the US for road trips in the summer. Why should I pay more because I drove somewhere that had no influence on the provincial road system?
For daily ion construction updates, photos and general urban rail news, follow me on twitter! @Canardiain
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