Mayors reject tax subsidy for TransLink 0
(24 HOURS FILE PHOTO)
The Mayors’ Council on Regional Transportation voted Thursday for TransLink to develop a plan, albeit with conditions, to save millions of dollars.
The vote comes after a provincial audit released this week suggested there’s $41 million of additional savings within the transport authority.
The Mayors want TransLink to develop a plan by March 31, on condition of no service reductions for transit routes, no liquidation of capital assets including real estate and no time-limited property tax.
A new funding model is requested to be complete by the end of February, and to close any funding gaps with TransLink’s reserves, calculated at $287.7 million in last year’s annual report.
“What we said today is we will not contribute any additional short term property tax to tide TransLink over for the next couple of years,” Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson said in a statement.
TransLink planned to respond Friday.
Earlier this month, the authority announced cuts to 300,000 hours of additional planned bus services and other projects to save $98 million over three years. The audit suggested $139 million could be saved.
TransLink reported a 10% revenue increase in the first half of the year compared to 2011 from selling off surplus property and other cost-cutting measures.