TransLink referendum delayed, more powers for metro mayors
Transportation Minister Todd Stone annnounced changes to TransLink Thursday morning.
Metro Vancouver mayors will get more power over long-term planning at TransLink, B.C.'s Transportation Minister Todd Stone announced on Thursday morning.
Under new legislation to be tabled this spring, the Mayors' Council will also help approve fare increases and oversee major asset sales.
Stone also said the proposed regional referendum on TransLink funding could be delayed until June 30, 2015.
Bur he reiterated that if Metro Vancouver residents are expected to pay any new fees, taxes or other funding sources for new transit project, they must be approved in a referendum.
"The provincial government is determined if voters are asked to pay new taxes and fees for expanded transportation, then the vision they are paying to support and the benefits they will receive must be clearly articulated and understood."
Details of Stone's proposal were contained in a letter he sent to North Vancouver Mayor Richard Walton, who is the chair of the TransLink Mayors' Council.
During the May provincial election Premier Christy Clark had promised to hold a referendum on funding for TransLink during the next civic election.
But the timeline was rejected by regional mayors, who demanded more time and input before it is held.
TransLink is Metro Vancouver's regional transportation authority and is responsible for managing public transit, several bridges and major transportation corridors in the region.