Transit area-benefiting tax, dedicated sales tax ou utilisateur-payeur

Normand Parisien from Transport 2000 Québec
is calling for a freeze on transit fare increases.
Prairie freight rates post-CWB, Ontario Northland, Not for sale, Sustainable Transportation Indicators for TDM Planning, Via Rail TGV 3h30 min entre Montréal et Toronto et plus in this week's Transport Action Hotline.

Transport 2000, La hausse des tarifs dans le transport en commun?

«Selon nous, à Transport 2000, on a trop recouru au principe de l'utilisateur-payeur dans le transport en commun, indique M. Parisien, de telle sorte que, maintenant, on en vient à étouffer la demande.» Transport 2000 Québec … rappelle que, depuis 2006, le gouvernement du Québec a entrepris de réinvestir dans le développement des services de transport en commun, ainsi que d'étendre ce concept aux transports collectifs» Claude Lafleur a écrit pour Le Devoir le 14 avril 2012  

«Il souligne cependant que, au début des années 1990, le gouvernement s'était plutôt retiré du financement de l'exploitation du transport en commun, provoquant de ce fait «un choc tarifaire qui contribuera potentiellement à neutraliser les effets de la nouvelle politique». En conséquence, la première recommandation de Transport 2000, rapporte M. Parisien, est d'instaurer un gel des tarifs pour une période d'au moins trois ans.

«Nous sommes réfractaires à l'augmentation des tarifs puisque, dans la région de Montréal, ceux-ci ont augmenté plus rapidement que l'inflation, dit-il. De plus, on sait qu'il y a une relation inverse entre la hausse du prix et la demande d'un bien ou d'un service. On observe ainsi qu'en Amérique du Nord, pour toute hausse d'un point de pourcentage, il y a une baisse de 0,4 % de la demande.»  Le Devoir a rapporté.

TransLink upgrades derailed, An "area-benefiting tax" 

"TransLink on Tuesday announced it will postpone its scheduled transit expansion plans, including a B-Line bus service along King George Boulevard and a rapid bus on Highway 1 over the Port Mann until it can find alternative funding sources to pay for them," Kelly Sinoski wrote for the Vancouver Sun.

TransLink CEO Ian Jarvis said TransLink is exploring the option of levying "an area-benefiting tax" - a differential tax on home or property owners who would see a substantial lift in their land values because of transit improvements - as a way to generate funding for capital projects," the Vancouver Sun reported on April 18.

Spacing Toronto, 74% of GTA support regional sales tax dedicated to transit

Greater Toronto residents would overwhelmingly support the concept of a Los Angeles-style regional sales tax dedicated to transit and infrastructure, according to a new poll conducted by Environics exclusively for Spacing.

"The result comes just two days after Richard Katz, a key player behind L.A. County’s 2008 transit financing deal, delivered a sold-out lecture at the Munk Centre to explain how City of Los Angeles mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, a Democrat, won public support for a half-cent increase to the regional sales tax that will raise $40 billion over 30 years for twelve major transit and transportation projects, as well as operating funds. (The list includes LRTs, BRTs, a subway, and a highway expansion)," John Lorinc wrote for Spacing on April 18.

Ontario Northland, Not for sale 

"There is only one real way to get the government to do the right thing with the ONR. All the communities, First Nations, businesses and other stakeholders have to say together "Government! Dismantling the ONR is unacceptable. Transportation of goods and people is fundamental to economic sustainability and growth. Rail is the most effective, economical, ecological and safest all-season transportation for most socio-economic needs in Ontario. To support socio-economic opportunity we expect our Government to support inter-connecting the communities, First Nations, businesses and economies of Northern Ontario to each other and the rest of the world with rail infrastructure that supports broad passenger and freight opportunities," Al Errington from  Coalition of Algoma Passenger Trains (CAPT) posted to the Ontario Northland Not For Sale Facebook Page.

VIA Rail peut foncer sans TGV,  3h30 min entre Montréal et Toronto

« Il n'est pas nécessaire d'investir 20 milliards de dollars dans un train à grande vitesse pour améliorer considérablement le service entre Québec et Windsor et rehausser sa popularité. «C'est le temps de parcours qui compte, a affirmé le président et chef de la direction de Via Rail, Marc Laliberté, au cours d'une rencontre avec l'équipe éditoriale de La Presse cette semaine. Si nous sommes en mesure d'abaisser le temps de parcours entre Montréal et Toronto en dessous de 4h, soit 3h30 min ou 3h45 min, nous allons attirer énormément de clientèle » Marie Tison a rapporté pour La Presse le 20 avril.

CWBA Facts,  Chuck Strahl blows smoke about railways

"In a Canadian Press story former Conservative Agriculture and Transportation Minister Chuck Strahl is obviously trying to distance himself from the ongoing disaster happening to prairie agriculture following the demise of the single-desk Canadian Wheat Board – a process he played a key role in starting," CWBA Facts reported. 

"His warning to Canadian Pacific Railway shareholder Pershing Square Capital Management that focusing on profits will hurt shippers is simply disingenuous.  It is the rules and conditions Mr. Strahl helped to put in place that will allow this group to use its market power to take more money from farmers.

"Strahl should have known that only the Wheat Board had the independence to challenge the railways.  He certainly could not have missed the fact the only real improvement in railway service happened after the Wheat Board successfully sued both foreign-owned railways for poor service and took tens of millions of dollars in penalties from them.

"In the November 21/11 Macleans magazine there is a business section article where Pershing Square Capital Management indicated it expected freight rates on the prairies to increase anywhere between 25 and 50%.  This will cripple most export oriented farmers.  With the single-desk Wheat Board gone, knowledgeable people, like Mr. Strahl, are attempting to distance themselves from the disaster for grain producers unfolding on the prairies," CWBA Facts reported on April 19. http://www.cwbafacts

University society says train travel treats environment better than flying

"We put together a proposal for Via Rail," said Emma Norton, the student union’s sustainability officer. "We said we wanted a certain price, and we’ll give you this many students, and on this one day all the King’s students will go together. It’ll be kind of like the Hogwarts Express," Kathryn Walsh reported for the Halifax Chronicle Herald on Apr. 17. 

"Dan Brown is a fourth-year sustainability student at King’s. He said Prof. Wayne Hankey was teasing him last summer about flying back and forth every year from his home in Vancouver to study sustainability. "We wanted to create a way to reduce carbon emissions and trains seemed like a logical way," said Brown. Taking the train instead of flying reduces emissions by 92 per cent, he said. He pitched the idea to Sustainability King’s, the student-run environmental society, and it brought the proposal to Via Rail in October," the Chronicle Herald reported.

La Saskatchewan investit dans les chemins de fer

«La Saskatchewan investira 700 000 $ pour améliorer l'infrastructure de 11 lignes ferroviaires courtes dont l'existence facilite le transport du grain des agriculteurs. La province veut ainsi donner un coup de pouce économique aux régions rurales» SRC a rapporté le lundi 16 avril 2012.

Railway Association of Canada Appoints Michael Bourque President and CEO

Michael Bourque joins RAC from the Chemistry Industry Association of Canada where, as vice president of External Relations, he was responsible for parliamentary relations, communications and information technology. Prior to that he was Director of Federal Public Affairs with Bayer Inc., a management consultant for PriceWaterhouseCoopers, and an executive in the Federal public service in the Department of Communications and the Privy Council Office. … Michael started his career as a political aide during the Mulroney government, as a special assistant to the Honorouble Perrin Beatty, in the departments of National Revenue, Solicitor General, National Defence, Health and Communications," Railway Association of Canada reported on April 16.

Nomination de Michael Bourque au poste de président-directeur général de l'Association des chemins de fer du Canada

«Avant de se joindre à l'ACFC, Michael Bourque a travaillé à l'Association canadienne de l'industrie de la chimie à titre de vice-président Relations extérieures chargé des relations parlementaires, des communications et de la technologie de l'information. Auparavant, il a été directeur Affaires publiques fédérales à Bayer Inc., consultant en gestion à PriceWaterhouseCoopers et haut fonctionnaire à la fonction publique fédérale, au sein du ministère des Communications et du Bureau du Conseil privé. . . . Michael a entrepris sa carrière en tant qu'attaché politique sous le gouvernement Mulroney, à titre d'adjoint spécial de l'honorable Perrin Beatty aux ministères du Revenu national, du Solliciteur général, de la Défense nationale, de la Santé et des Communications,» l'Association des chemins de fer du Canada a rapporté le 16 Avril.

“Sustainable Transportation Indicators for TDM Planning,” Todd Litman

From Facebook Todd Litman reports: "Here is an article I wrote that was recently published in the TDM Review, the newsletter of the Association for Commuter Transportation (, a professional organization for mobility management program coordinators. 

"Sustainable transport planning requires comprehensive evaluation of objectives and impacts, including some that are generally ignored in conventional planning. It's a fascinating subject," Litman reports. The story is at:

High-speed train between Edmonton and Calgary? Maybe

"“I think everybody would ultimately like to see a project like high-speed rail between Calgary and Edmonton, but I think that we have to actually build a commuter culture first in our two major centres and probably also in Red Deer,” said Danielle Smith, who highlighted the Wildrose plans for new direct funding to municipalities," Trish Audette wrote for the Edmonton Journal on April 11.

CN eyes ONTC

North Bay Nugget, Gord Young,  Apr. 19 2012 
Canadian National Railway may still be interested in purchasing the ONTC’s rail division.

Transport Action Canada
Hotline 1162, April 20, 2012
(formerly Transport 2000 / anciennement Transport 2000 Canada)
(613) 594-3290


April 21, Toronto, Transport Action Ontario Annual General Meeting, Metro Hall, Toronto, 55 John St., Room 303. Business meeting 10:00 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. : 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Via Rail, LRT in Ontario 

les 26 et 27 avril, Granby, Le Colloque 2012 de l'Association des Transports collectifs ruraux du Québec (ATCRQ) se tiendra à Hôtel Spa et Confort à Granby, Québec

May 12, Toronto, Moving Forward: A Public Forum about Transportation" co-hosted by Transport Action Ontario

May 23, Vancouver, Transport Action BC 17:45 to 19:45 at the Vancouver Firehall Library at West 10th and Granville. Annual General Meeting will be from 19:00 – 19:15

May 31, Toronto, Mobility pricing conference, Metropolitan Hotel,