Comment 99292

By arienc (registered) | Posted March 28, 2014 at 10:10:21 in reply to Comment 99251

Just to clarify, the $13.5 billion difference includes all 3 levels of government in Canada, with municipalities picking up the largest share. Municipal taxes are paid by property owners, regardless of how much or how little they use the roadways.

The Conference Board Study was a good attempt, probably the best assessment at the provincial level, but if you actually read the study behind the headlines you find it...

a) attributed a fudge factor of 10% to "non-users" with admiteddly no rationale for that assumption. "Table 11 shows the whole road network cost after a somewhat arbitrary 10 percent of the road network costs are first allocated to non-users."

b) used 3 different methods to estimate road costs. The figure used in the headlines was the lowest estimate that was studied. The actual cost recovery percentage before including this fudge factor was a range between 57.3% and 87.6%.

c) did not reflect the fact that there is a significant cost for rural roads and highways outside the GTHA which are heavily used by GTHA residents. The reason for the GTHA cost recovery being so high is simply because the GTHA has 42% of the road users, but a much lower % of the road infrastructure in the province.

The amount spent on transit by all 3 levels of government (again using Transport Canada's most recently released statistical adddendum) is less than $8 billion. I assume this is net (after fare recovery) not gross, but still, it clearly shows public transit is not as heavily subsidized as motor transport.

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