I am steamed that the Toronto I love and still live in has been so badly managed financially. Over the past decade, I bought the “feds did it” logic, then the “province did it” excuse. Still do, historically speaking. But now Mr Miller would have me blame Councillor Ashton.
No thanks, Mr Miller, Brian Ashton was right – its your regressive flat tax proposals that are little related to the harmful human behaviours that are choking our city that are at fault.
Even folks on the other side of the Atlantic can see us better than we can ourselves. The Economist (2007.07.26), in a section called “The Americas” (like we’re still a colony, eh?) ran an article about Toronto: “Nice but broke: Canada’s aspiring city state”, echoing this blog:
The city's case for even more autonomy would, however, be boosted if Mr Miller made more effective use of the powers he already has. Road tolls or a congestion charge stand a better chance of winning approval than his current tax proposals, reckons Tom Courchene, an economist at Queen's University. They would reduce pollution and congestion, and scoop up money from out-of-city commuters.
An acquaintance, Justin, ex of Toronto City Hall, commented to me: “905ers [folks living in the Toronto surrounds] and the Greater Toronto Transit Authority will never take the lead on tolling their own citizens to drive in the region. The political make-up and power-base of the GTTA is too suburban to take the lead as Miller suggests they should.”
So Mr Miller, Professor Courchene thinks you should toll roads, The Economist thinks you should toll roads, Justin thinks you should toll roads, and I think you should toll roads. So when will you figure this out?