Money for Trains Falls Short

First, THANK YOU to the Province and the Federal government for the biggest grants ever given to the Region. 300 million from the province and 265 million from the feds. Unfortunately it leaves us around 225 million short. This could translate into a between 7 and 12 percent rise in property tax in one year. I can’t accept that, it’s too high a rise. The rest of council also feels the same. I also, due to the ghost of the RIM park scandal in Waterloo, cannot accept the Region taking on a high debt load. Right now we are proud of our aaA rating with Moody’s.

It is too short a time to make a decision before the election, so the next council will decide this.

We will look at some options staff will come up with, such as shortening the line or private partnerships. We will also look once again at the bus rapid transit.

I am still in favour of the light rail transit for all the reasons I have given, but the gap in funding is a bridge too far for taxpayers to  cross. So sad.

If you have any ideas on ways to fund the trains, please leave a comment and I will pass it along to staff for their consideration.

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2 responses to “Money for Trains Falls Short

  1. Serge LeVert-Chiasson

    Dear Jane:

    We discussed this over the BBQ and my fears are now confirmed. You’ve done the right decision to not push this through without proper consideration on how the municipality can afford this. One solution would be to amalgamate the three cities and reduce the bureaucracy in accordance to the amalgamation and pass on the savings to improve public transportation. This would likely have a neutral impact on our tax base (reduce taxes through savings from the amalgamation, raise expenditures to get high quality LTR and public transportation).

  2. Already stated that if go with cheaper option – funding will be reduced. Only way to go is Rail> Need to find the money from within Region – there is a lot of private money that should be contributing, so people that already taxed too much are not hit.

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