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Vancouver voters reject proposed sales tax increase for transit funding


Citizens in Vancouver, British Columbia, last week voted against a 0.5 percent sales tax increase to support a new transportation plan.

The increase was estimated to generate an additional $250 million (in Canadian dollars) each year, officials from the Canadian Urban Transit Association (CUTA) said in a press release.

The proposed Transportation and Transit Plan calls for an extended rail system, more frequent bus service, several measures aimed at creating viable walking and cycling options and other proposals.

CUTA officials estimated the plan would reduce traffic congestion by 20 percent.

Following rejection of the sales tax increase, the region will need find alternative strategies to fund the Transportation and Transit Plan, CUTA officials said.

"While citizens of Metro Vancouver rejected the idea of a sales tax increase, the increasing demand and support for transit clearly demonstrates their understanding of the critical role transit plays in boosting economic growth, increasing productivity and enhancing the quality of life of citizens," said Patrick Leclerc, president and chief executive officer of CUTA.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 7/7/2015