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Mobility pricing will only work if affordability is taken into consideration: report

Last Updated Apr 16, 2018 at 10:10 am PDT

(iStock Photo)

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – Life is already so expensive in Metro Vancouver. So as an independent commission examines how mobility pricing should be rolled out, a left-leaning think tank says how it factors in affordability will be key.

The Canadian Centre of Policy Alternatives (CCPA) has new report, proposing three ways that can be achieved.

The first step is ensuring there’s adequate public transit so people actually have a viable alternative when mobility pricing is implemented, says Marc Lee, an economist with the CCPA.

“A key sort of equity concern is that low-income households who may have had to move away from the central city or move farther away from where they work to areas that are more automobile-dependent get financially harmed.”

He’s also calling for a tax credit for people living on low incomes who live in areas underserved by transit.

“A third to half of the revenues that you raise would flow back into this credit. So, it would basically be a credit that piggybacks on what’s currently the GST credit and the carbon tax credit. So, administratively, there’s already infrastructure in place.”

Lee also proposes that ride-hailing and carsharing services should also have to pay fees to use the roads when mobility pricing is introduced.