Todd Stone, B.C.'s minister of transportation, has apparently told the Victoria Regional Transit Commission (VRTC) that he will approve their long-standing request for a two cents per litre gas tax hike in the Victoria region. The VRTC wants the tax, which would generate $6.6 million, for bus improvements.
Given that a time-consuming legal review will be required before a border toll can be implemented, it almost certainly won't be on the November ballot. But given the climate crisis, it is essential that we provide ways for people to get around and avoid burning so much fossil fuel. Taxes on high-carbon fuels to provide better low-carbon transit is one of the better ways to accomplish this, and a border toll is an effective mechanism to reduce carbon tax avoidance.
Once the champagne is drunk, the noisemakers go silent, the balloons pop and the New Year's kisses end, 2013 will bring one nasty hangover for cash-strapped B.C. taxpayers. Taxes, fees and levies from all levels of government are set to go up, leaving even less of your hard-earned money in your pocket.