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Horgan taking 'wait-and-see' approach on mobility pricing

Last Updated May 25, 2018 at 3:55 pm PDT

(Lasia Kretzel, NEWS 1130 Photo)
Summary

BC's premier isn't taking a side yet when it comes to proposed mobility pricing models unveiled on Thursday

John Horgan says the province can proceed if the mobility pricing report meets objectives of affordability

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – BC’s premier isn’t taking a side on mobility pricing just yet, a day after Metro Vancouver mayors approved a new report on the matter.

“Most of the mayors are taking a cautious approach to the contents of the report so I think I’ll follow suit and allow time to go by and let us reflect on what’s contained in the report,” John Horgan says. “And if it meets our objectives of affordability then we can proceed.”

This comes following his election promise for tolling fairness across the province.

Early into his premiership, Horgan removed bridge tolls saying they unfairly targeted Lower Mainland drivers, since places like Kelowna didn’t have them.

However, mobility pricing is currently only being considered for Metro Vancouver.

“I haven’t read the report from start to finish so I can’t comment on that. My view is that affordability is what we campaigned on and affordability is what I want to deliver for British Columbians.”

Horgan is not yet commiting to the idea of charging drivers.

“My expectation at this point is that the mayors that commissioned the report are not enthusiastic about the contents so I’ll wait to see how they want to proceed.”

He will need to decide eventually, because any road pricing needs provincial approval before it starts.

The Mobility Pricing Independent Commission outlined costs for two different models on Thursday.

It suggests “regional congestion point” charges would cost the average paying household $5 to $8 per day and reduce congestion by up to 25% and raise about $1.5 million per year.

Another model, which charges based on distance, would cost $3 to $5 per day and have the similar effects on congestion and revenue.