Yes let's not be fiscally responsible & get the graft & thievery under control,let's just TAX everything (a problem everywhere it seems) but Quebec/Montreal arenotorius for it\
As he prepares to hit resident Montreal motorists on Jan. 1 with an as yet undetermined tax on their vehicle registrations, Mayor Gérald Tremblay wants to make one thing perfectly clear:
"I want to tell you that I am not taking this action to settle the city of Montreal's financial problems," he told a packed news conference Thursday at city hall, referring to reports the tax might be used to cover the $250 million in budget cuts Tremblay announced last month, "We will have other ways to settle those ... problems.
"I am doing this in the interests of motorists and those of public transit users, the additional contribution (made by this tax) will be dedicated to public transit."
And if the provincial government allows it, Tremblay's car tax will not be a charge exclusive to the city of Montreal. Standing alongside the mayor at Thursday's press conference was Westmount mayor Peter Trent, who heads an association representing Montreal's 15 independent suburbs and shares Tremblay's rationale for introducing the tax in the suburbs, as well.
"I'm supporting this ... for the simple reason that we can no longer finance public transit with property taxes alone," he said, noting that Quebec is the only province that doesn't contribute to the operational budgets of public transit authorities, "We are at our limit. Therefore, we think it is logical to have motorists finance public transit."
For the past two years, Montreal has enjoyed special powers of taxation granted by provincial law. Montreal Island suburbs, however, require government permission to levy a vehicle registration tax.
Tremblay said the details of a vehicle registration tax would be made public once the city budget for 2011 is tabled, an announcement expected in December. All Quebec motorists already pay a $30 fee on their registration to support public transit across the province. In Toronto, motorists pay a $60 car licence tax to the city. The tax, adopted in 2007, is collected by the provincial government when a vehicle's plates are renewed.
As he has in the past, Tremblay cited statistics that suggest traffic jams in the Montreal area cost more than $1 billion annually in lost productivity. But when asked why Montrealers are being hit with a tax rather than off-island motorists - who are responsible for much of the daily traffic on Montreal Island and on its bridges - with a toll, Tremblay's answer was simple:
"It would take three years (establish a toll system)," he said, "And I'm not going to wait three years. We're evaluating the tolls, but I need immediate action.
"You're totally right when you talk about (the off-island suburbs contribution to on-island traffic), but we have to start somewhere."
Asked if a made-in-Montreal tax on cars might send more city residents to live in the suburbs, Tremblay said Montrealers might be joined by their neighbours in the West Island and other city suburbs where property taxes were increased.
"We have no choice," he said.
Trent was even more forthright: "If there's been a mass exodus off the island of Montreal ... it's because property taxes have been increasing at a vertiginous rate in the last 10, 15, 20 years...It's not because of taxes on cars.
"(This car tax) makes more sense ... people are leaving because property taxes are half of what they are on the island of Montreal - that's the real problem."