B.C. Transit hike unnecessary: Douglas Street businesses

The Association of Douglas Street Businesses has looked at the math and disagrees with B.C. Transit’s recent message of “pay up or lose out.”

Recently the transit authority announced a tax hike of $28 per average residential property would be needed to prevent service cutbacks of 286,000 hours.

The Victoria Transit Commission approved the increase, but the business association argues the consequences of keeping transit taxes at current levels were exaggerated.

“Rather than returning to 1995 service levels as B.C. Transit reported, a zero tax increase would result in returning to the recent 2009/2010 service levels,” according to press release.

Transit Commission chair Chris Causton denied the conclusions.

To have no increase in taxation would have meant “the elimination of routes and specialty services, such as late-night trips, and drastically cutting spring, summer, and weekend and holiday service,” he wrote, in response to the allegations.

rholmen@vicnews.com