Comment 80119

By kevlahan (registered) | Posted August 28, 2012 at 15:00:41

What!? The Province is now asking Hamilton to go out and try to raise its own money for LRT by negotiating directly with the Federal Government!

This was not at all how Metrolinx was supposed to work.

The Kitchener-Waterloo LRT project predates Metrolinx, and in any case K-W is not part of Metrolinx, but Hamilton most certainly is. Metrolinx was created to plan, finance, build and operate transit throughout the GTA and Hamilton. The large scale coordination and centralized decision making was why it was created! Apparently we are now going back to the pre-Metrolinx era of uncoordinated planning and ad hoc case-by-case cobbled together financing.

The Province would clearly like the Federal government to contribute to fund Metrolinx projects, which they should, but the idea was never that the Province would download the Federal fundraising to the municipalities. The Government of Ontario was supposed to do the negotiating and ensure Metrolinx was fully funded to be able to complete its projects.

Telling the individual municipalities to raise the money directly from the Federal Government is a recipe for confusion, delay and ultimately killing the projects, as the ground rules constantly change and cities compete with each other to get money from both levels of government.

Minister Chiarelli's comments show that either he didn't think carefully before speaking (maybe he is obsessed by fund raising and budget cuts), or that he is planning on effectively killing the legislated planning and financing role of Metrolinx.

It also ignores the point that this is manifestly not the deal they offered Toronto and other municipalities!

Comment edited by kevlahan on 2012-08-28 15:02:53

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