Monday, May 2, 2011

Federal election day: What are parties saying about transit?

Today, Canadians vote for our next federal government. What might some parties do with respect to public transit, if they're given a mandate to govern out country?
  • Conservatives: The Conservative Party, over the past six years while they've run the federal government, has been forthcoming with funding for municipal transit projects--and Ottawa is no exception. But they haven't made any pledge to sustained, consistent funding, and their platform only mentions past investments, without promise of future ones.
  • Liberals: Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff has said he's interested in funding public transit, although there's no commitment for a funding strategy as of yet. Their platform mentions local and regional rapid transit, as well as high-speed inter-regional rail, as priorities, but it remains to be seen how they'd prioritize them.
  • NDP: The NDP actually proposed a national transit strategy during the last parliament, and that's also a major part of their platform as well. The platform also says they'll immediately transfer "another cent of the existing gas tax to public transit funding for municipalities".
  • Green: The Green platform has a commitment for "[s]ustainable long-term funding support for municipalities to repair decades-old crumbling infrastructure", and their budget includes a Mass Transit Promotion municipal "superfund" worth $700M per year nationally.


Eric S. Smith said...

Well, the party with the least interest in transit has a majority. Look forward to hearing, "No, we can't do that until the budget's balanced," for some time to come, followed by, of course, "No, we can't do that, it would unbalance the budget."

Dwight Williams said...

Probable...and distressing.