Tax for winter cyclists | Marchand rejects the idea of ​​punishing “low-carbon” road users

(Quebec) The mayor of Quebec has brushed aside a request from the second opposition to city hall, which recently proposed taxing cyclists. According to Bruno Marchand, this idea would only serve to divide the population in addition to punishing “low-carbon” road users.


Posted at 4:42 p.m.

Last week, the unelected leader of Équipe Priorité Québec proposed imposing a $30 tax on winter cyclists, an equivalent amount, albeit voluntary, for those who take out their bikes in summer.

Patrick Paquet argued that this would be a fair measure for Quebec motorists who are preparing to experience an increase in the registration tax. The funds thus collected would be used, according to Mr. Paquet, to replenish public transport in addition to paying for snow removal from cycle paths in winter.

The mayor of Quebec brushed aside the proposal from the leader of the second opposition.

“This debate seeks to pit us against each other, saying “ah bad cyclists”. There are no bad motorists, bad cyclists, bad pedestrians. There is a city that will offer people ways to get around and you will choose the right one,” replied Bruno Marchand during a press conference on a housing announcement.

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PHOTO EDOUARD PLANTE-FRÉCHETTE, LA PRESSE ARCHIVES

Cycle path on Chemin Sainte-Foy

Mayor Marchand indicated that for each kilometer traveled, the cyclist cost the City 25 times less. “I’m not saying to motorists “shame on you”, not at all. I’m just saying that it’s easy to blame others…”

We are certainly not going to tell those who use low-carbon methods, which also cost less, we are going to charge you! That would be paradoxical.

Bruno Marchand, mayor of Quebec

In a question addressed to the mayor on Wednesday, a journalist indicated that snow removal from bicycle paths represented 6% of the total snow removal budget, “and the contribution of cyclists is zero or almost nothing.”

The premise of this question visibly startled the mayor, who asked the reporter how motorists paid for snow removal. It’s through property taxes, obviously.

“And cyclists don’t pay their municipal taxes? asked Mayor Marchand. It’s interesting because I looked at all the city’s regulations and I don’t remember seeing that cyclists are exempt from paying their municipal taxes. Perhaps Mr. Patrick Paquet saw a line that I did not see. »

“Absurdly, my point is that the motorist, the cyclist, the pedestrian pays municipal taxes. If he is a tenant, by the money he sends to the owner who pays him taxes and if he is an owner by his property taxes. »

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