Fee Hikes Get Green Light from Council
Prince George, B.C. – When the New Year rolls around, the fees charged for a number of things in Prince George will be increasing.
Mayor and Council have approved revisions to the Comprehensive Fees and Charges bylaw which sets the rates for user fees in the City. It has been three years since the last across the board increases were approved.
While the changes also include some housekeeping matters, such as changing the name of the Coliseum to the Rolling Mix Concrete Arena, the bylaw outlines modest increases to a number of user fees, most at a rate of 3%.
licence for a spayed or neutered dog will increase from $33 dollars to $34. If the dog is not ‘fixed’, the licence feee increases from $75 to $77 dollars.
Off Street Parking
Hourly rate for off street parking to increase from .75 cents an hour to $1 per hour. The daily rate to go up from $4 dollars to $6.00
Ice rental rates ( adult prime) will go up another $6 dollars from $185 to $191
Public admission for adults will increase from $6.30 to $6.50
Pine Valley Golf Course
It will cost an extra dollar for 18 rounds of golf at Pine Valley as the new rate will be $26.00
9 holes of golf at the same course will also increase by a dollar to $18.00
The fees will increase a further 3% in 2018 and again in 2019.
Councillor Albert Koehler was the lone dissenter on the changes.
Although Council approved the increased, a concern was raised the changes will kick in in just four weeks and many may not have received notice about the pending increase.
The fee increases for parking are hardly modest. A 33% increase for hourly parking and a 50% increase for daily parking. Amazing how a small patch of old pavement increases in valve so much over the course of a year.
Unless the City has another explanation, one can only assume it is the cost of the new parking control system.
When they implemented that over the last few months, there was no mention of such a substantial increase coming over such a short period.
If the downtown is going to begin to be more popular with some of the new merchants that seem to be moving in, there will be more demand for parking and the City is sure to increase the fee again next year.
In fact, the City may even begin to discover that there actually is not enough parking provided for downtown.
I would like to see a block by block inventory of retail and office areas and associate those with the parking requirements generated by those spaces as is used in the zoning bylaw to determine the number of parking spaces developers must provide for buildings outside the downtown parking zone for which the City has the responsibility to provide parking.
For instance, no one considers that in a commercial area outside of downtown, the parking is immediately adjacent to the building generating the parking requirement and there are a given number of parking spots for those with ambulatory challenges. That is not the case in the downtown core north of 7th. One could easily have to walk a couple of blocks or more in some cases.
The 3% increase applies to items that you have a choice on. Many people don’t have a choice on the parking therefore the 33-50% increase. Interesting!
Sure there is a choice
1. work somewhere else
2. take the bus
4. take a bike
5. shop somewhere else
6. meet someone for lunch somewhere else.
Just to name a few.
There are almost as many choices as there are people making them.
“Fee Hikes Get GRREN Light from Council”
This despite the fact that GREEN is no longer the mayor. ;-)
oops ….. GRREN=GREEN
It looks like the real messages are:
1. You can park at no cost for up to 3 hours on the street in the downtown zone
2. If you choose to stay longer for your errands, pleasure, etc. you must pay more to subsidize those who spend less time downtown. In the final analysis, what will this do to the use of downtown when it comes to other available options?
3. If you work downtown, or must stay downtown for longer periods, the new system forces the worker to park in an off-street parking area. Now that an improved control system is in place, for the “benefit” of having to walk further, you will now pay 50% more.
If you park for 4 hours you’re paying 25 cents an hour for the privilege. For 5 hours, it’s 40 cents an hour.
I really don’t understand why this is such a big deal for a lot of people.
People who use the downtown, whether it be for work or shopping or eating, etc. should pay for it. The streets aren’t being maintained for free.
I think it’s the idea that city council is BSing people by telling us we are facing a 3% increase in fee when clearly that isn’t the case with some of it. The way these rates both for fee increase and inflation are laughable. I have yet to see a <2% increase in my groceries or other items I purchase per year, yet our inflation is supposed to always be under that.
“…the bylaw outlines modest increases to a number of user fees, most at a rate of 3%.”
Operative word there is “most”.
In fairness to everyone, I think it’s well past time that City Employees started paying for their parking. That lot at City Hall is a snow clearing priority for some bizarre reason.
There is only one thing that is special for downtown. The area between Victoria and Queensway, north of 7th is a parking district for which building owners do not have to provide parking spaces based on the tables in the Zoning Bylaw. Instead, the City provides off street parking which is normally the responsibility of the building owner.
As far as on street parking goes the City provides that throughout the city, especially residential streets, but also on streets servicing commercial land uses. However, it used to have paid on street parking only in the Central Business District. Recently they tried free parking and it caused some problems from those who worked downtown.
While shopping centres, whether the small neighbourhood centres or the larger regional centres, provide free off street parking for their customers and employees, the downtown does not. Some facilities, such as YXS, CNC, UNBC, the hospital, the Phoenix Medical Centres have paid off street parking. Most others consider providing free parking as part of the cost of doing business.
That then goes to the notion that if those businesses add that cost into rental costs of the sublet space which then gets absorbed into the price of the goods and services they provide, that purchasing good and services from a merchant occupying a 1,000SF space downtown should be able to sell a product for less than the same type of merchant operating out of a shopping centre. That is especially true for those who have less expensive rent in the downtown or less property taxes due to the lower assessment in older premises.
The question I still have is whether the downtown land owners pay any tax or other fee for the City providing the off street parking. I cannot find the answer to that on the City web site. The downtown parking strategy tells us only a small component of the whole downtown parking project.
As far as “the streets are not being maintained for free goes”, all the streets and lanes are being maintained through the entire city through property taxes, not through parking fees.
The only different thing about downtown is that the places where people want to do business and recreate do not match up very well with the location where parking, whether on or off street, can be found. That is not the case outside of the downtown where parking is typically on the premises.
There are some very simple solutions to that which can be found in other small and mid-sized cities throughout Canada and the USA.
But, we do not have a planning department with the knowledge of how that is done.
It is only 25 cents an hour if you park on the street for 3 hours and then move your vehicle to a parkade for an hour. Parkades do not give you the first 3 hours free that I know of – or do they?
Then there is Trudeau’s idiotic carbon tax that will raise a families expenses upto $3000 a year and possibly more.
WTF does that have to do with increased fees in the city of PG? Any chance to get a slug in at the gov’t that isn’t run by Harperites. BTW I didn’t vote for Trudeau so I don’t say this because I am defending him.
So you don’t worry about taxes or fee hikes then, must be nice.
I was just making a point by piling on taxpayers costs.
Where do you get that figure?
“For an average urban two-income earner family with one child and a combined income of $65,000, a carbon tax was estimated to result in $1,274 of additional expenditure. However, if accompanied by payroll tax reduction of $ 1,101, the total impact would be $172 or 0.3%. In comparison, average rural families may expect a 0.2-0.7% impact.”
A gross impact of $1,274 is significantly different from $3,000!!
If a payroll tax reduction is implemented then a net impact is $172. A long way from $3,000
Trudeau’s carbon tax will have no effect on BCs Gordon Campbell created carbon tax until at least 2022 . Because our carbon tax is three times higher than the ones in other provinces being so vilified by the right wing lunatic fringe financed by the Koch brothers and friends .
Ataloss you are just a Rockefeller suckup.
Tell me why there is even a carbon tax? Where is the science and proof?
I guess you are so rich from your imaginary investments fees and taxes no matter the source are of no concern, must be nice
Another day of reality versus denial. In the meantime they are trying to exist with the extremely unhealthy (fatal in countless cases) dense smog pollution in Beijing, caused by fog, a natural phenomenon, PLUS the heavy pollunion from the burning of fossil fuels! People are running around with face masks, schools are closed and people are urged to stay inside.
No wonder China signed on to the Paris Treaty! Beijing is not the only city which regularly goes through this torture!
How productive is arguing about the obvious? Waste of time. Don Quixote would love it!
Europe introduced higher taxes on fuel many decades ago. The first time I drove through Europe was in 1965. The Italians had already raised their fuel taxes significantly higher than Europe at that time. Tourists could purchase coupons when crossing the border so that they could get a rebate. The Italians were concerned that the higher prices would reduce tourist traffic.
Europe has been living with high taxes on fuel, carbon or not, for such a long time that it really does not seem to have affected their competitiveness in the local or the international marketplace.
Just call it a conservation method – better quality vehicles, roads, etc.
The Cities downtown and off street parking strategy has more flaws than an F35 fighter jet. Its all based on unsubstantiated assumptions.
Why is there a carbon tax ? There are as many examples as there are polluters . I’ll use the gasoline six cent per litre carbon tax . If you buy a litre of gas and burn it , you are part of the pollution problem . I’m proud to pay the carbon tax there by helping society as a whole for my transgression . Where is the science ? If you have a garage . Do you run your fossil burner in it with the doors closed ? If not . Why ? That’s all the science a normal person would need . Get used to it . If you creat garbage you pay to dispose of it . If you pollute the air , then you pay for it . No more free ride for filth pedlars. Get used to it . It ain’t goin away .
A carbon tax does nothing to reduce emissions. Major emitters just buy into the carbon credit scheme while the average person has no access to this. You and I are left holding the bag.
By the way, comparing a toxic gas (co) to an inert gas (co2) in your argument is completely irrelevant. Maybe you should look into the “science” behind both these gasses and their respected TLV’s..
Do you have any idea where the money for EV $2500 to $5000 rebate comes from ? There are many other areas that are lowering their foot print by using the program . You don’t see many EVs in the north yet but down south the HOV lanes are full of them . South of the border is even more evident that the revolution is well under way .
“A carbon tax does nothing to reduce emissions”
You really do not think such things through very well, do you?
If a carbon-based fuel becomes more expensive, and carbon based fuels cause major pollution whether CO, ozone, particulates, AHC, VOCs, etc., then there will be a move to make carbon based engines as well as the car bodies in which they are contained, more fuel efficient. Not only that, but there will be those who will look for fuel alternatives such as electricity and Hydrogen.
If let to their own devices, industry and people will continue with the path of least resistance.
Industry seems to be doing quite well with electronic equipment development and promoting changes there without government interference. That does not seem to be the case with internal combustion engines.
Can we have a button on the menu bar dedicated to climate change? There are buttons for Sports, Weather and so forth! Every news item is turned into endless denial and support- no matter what the original subject! “FEES HIKES” is a good example! After just a few comments the discussion is steered to the never ending feud and inescapable insults about mankind’s irrefutable contribution and pollution of our world! 196 countries already agreed that it is a global issue of vital importance! OMG !
Someone has to expose obvious lies . When there is no rebuttal to lies about the numbers repeated over and over , then the lies are accepted as truth . That’s called manufacturing concent . That’s really dangerous for us all .
All equally applicable to the “climate change” debate..Now your getting it.!
Thank you Ataloss that is why I have to reply to your posts.
PG you seem confused, c02 is not a pollutant, it is an orderless colorless gas essential for life.
Air Pollution in China has nothing to do with c02. It is the result of industry, vehicles with no emission standards and older coal generation plants. Modern super critical plants emit almost no pollution, in fact the exhaust coming out can be cleaner than the air going in.
gopg2015 well excuse me I was off by $500
“To get household estimates we use the average household size of 2.5 from the 2011 census. That means the tax will cost the average household $524 in 2018 and $2,569 in 222.” ht tp://www.taxpayer.com/blog/tax-costs-required-by-the-federal-carbon-tax-plan
My posting is about taxes and more taxes and fees. Oh by the way maybe some can post why we need a carbon tax, hey gopg2015 maybe you can find the proof?
Ataloss, you state: “Someone has to expose the obvious lies.”
In an earlier comment you stated: “You don’t see many EVs in the north yet but down south the HOV lanes are full of them.”
Where is your proof that the HOV lanes down south are FULL of EVs?
I’ve never seen the HOV lanes in Vancouver FULL of EVs! I see the HOV lanes full of all kinds of vehicles, with the vast majority of them being powered by gas or diesel!
So again, where is your proof that the HOV lanes are FULL of EVs?
Or am I just exposing your OBVIOUS lie?
Who is lying? A bit of exaggeration there.
There are many hypotheses around the notion of global climate change. But, that is all they are, hypotheses.
As a precautionary principle, most countries have agreed to do what they can to deal with human activities which may contribute or are likely to contribute to some extent to climate change. Sort of like better to be safe than sorry.
It does create jobs. It can contribute to more efficiency. It may contribute to improved health via improved air quality. And it may mean that one may go to one less concert at the CN Centre. Such is life.
There are still far too many people in the world who wished they had such problems to contend with.
Hart Guy. I think Ataloss is referring to the electric buses. I rarely see busses in the HOV lanes when I am there and if I do I never noticed whether they were EV or not.
An anecdotal observation is not an objective determination. Ataloss has trouble with the difference between the two sometimes … LOL
Kind of reminds me of Trump’s opinions ….
First HOV means high occupancy vehicle lane . It is legal for one person in an ev to drive in them along with buses and other vehicles cramed with people . Just cause it don’t happen in PG , doesn’t mean it don’t happen hartguy . The EVs are easy to spot .
Ataloss, I’ve been to Vancouver many, many times! I’ve yet to see the HOV lanes FULL of EVs! As I stated earlier, I see the HOV lanes full of all kinds of vehicles, the vast majority of them being gas or diesel powered!
I’ve been in the Okanagan many, many times as well. Kelowna’s HOV lanes are also full of all kinds of vehicles, again the vast majority being gas or diesel powered!
So, how many EVs are currently registered in BC and what percentage of the total registered vehicles do their numbers represent? Not a very big number at all I suspect and I’m fairly certain that it’s hardly enough to fill up the HOV lanes!
Prove me wrong!
“First HOV means high occupancy vehicle lane”
“It is legal for one person in an ev to drive in them along with buses and other vehicles cramed with people”
Actually one just needs 2 people to drive in an HOV lane or be on a motorcycle. No one needs to be cramed.
And, for the last three years I have driven in the GVRD about once a month. My observation is that the cars I typically see in them are overwhelmingly occupied by two people, rarely 3 or more. I cannot attest to having seen one EV vehicle other than electric buses. That does not mean I did not see one on occasion, I just did not recognize it as such.
As to some actual numbers:
At the end of 2015 there were 3,200 electric cars registered in BC. Hybrids were numbered at 36,000 based on ICBC records. BC had 2,297,000 registered passenger vehicles at the end of 2015.
That means that that there are 0.14% electric vehicles registered and 1.57% hybrid vehicles.
I suggest that if you see as many as you do in HOV lanes you are seeing a very biased sample which does not represent an accurate slice of the entire population of vehicles on the road.
Keep posting such drivel to ensure your credibility remains questionable.
Ataloss, the total EV Fleet size as of December 31, 2015 was 18,451. Of that, 3326 were in BC, 2419 being Battery Electric Vehicles (BEV) and the remaining 907 being Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles (PHEV).
3326 EV’s in BC, total as of December 31, 2015!
Hardly enough to FILL our HOV lanes as you suggest! Are your eyes turning brown, because you’re full of it!
Ataloss, Q3 2016 updated numbers reveal BC’s EV Fleet at 4698 units!
Still a drop in the bucket and again, hardly enough to FILL the HOV lanes, but you go ahead and keep lying!!
Aren’t you glad that I joined you in exposing obvious lies, even if they are your lies, haha!
Oops, sorry, here’s the link to my 2016 Q3 numbers!
Well, have fun getting at each other! In the meantime 196 countries are on board and they have already identified what measures must be taken, whether you argue endlessly here or not!
Thousands of scientist have put their professional reputation on the line! To suggest that they are unethical hapless victims of a global conspiracy are ludicrous!
@ataloss and gopg2015.
So by living in the north I still have to heat my house with gas, still have to drive the same distance to work and leisure with no alternatives available. Groceries and goods are still trucked in using diesel and gas..You have local industry left with little to no options to partake in alternatives.
To some extent I agree with the theory of a carbon tax to reduce emissions but if your imposing it on people who don’t have alternative options all your doing is subsidizing those that do. How is this morally fair..? Sure the carbon tax makes perfect sense in a large city where the options are available.
Breaking news …..
Since July 2012, low income BC residents have been receiving tax credits to offset the average impact of the carbon tax. How much is received depends on the family size and adjusted family net income. The maximum annual payment amount for the period July 2016 to June 2017 is $115.50 for the applicant, $115.50 for a spouse or common-law partner, and $34.50 per child ($115.50 for the first child in a single parent family).
Most people understand that carbon taxes impact lower income people more than those who are in higher income brackets. I know that government can be stupid, but sometimes they are not as stupid as some of the population they serve.
Living in the north has nothing to do with the commute distances. It is city size that impacts commute distances. The larger the city, the further the average commute and probably the slower the average commute.
The carbon tax has a minimal impact once one breaks out the elements which o into the total cost of a vehicle including purchase, financing charges, maintenance and cost of gas prior to carbon tax addition.
Of course, if you feel that living in the south is cheaper, there is an alternative. Move there.
By having a tax on carbon and increasing the cost at the pump you basically force the people on lower incomes to buy less gas, however those on higher incomes can continue to pollute to their hearts content. So a carbon tax is not a solution its merely smoke and mirrors.
If you want to decrease emissions then we should have all industry shut down for one or two weeks every year. This would have an immediate effect on emissions. All Countries would have to participate so those two weeks would be when people took their holidays, etc;.
This is a simple and effective solution, much like eating less beef to reduce emissions, however I doubt that anyone would try to implement such a system.
Our solution is to sell natural gas to high polluting countries and because of the huge emissions emitted by LNG plants, upstream emissions, etc; we are actually increasing emissions while pretending that we are reducing them by shutting down coal plants.
Just us hey? No other country shipping LNG has any emissions?
Is this FRIDAY FREE FOR ALL already??? Looking at this, seems to be.
I agree with axman.. city employees should pay for parking, if they are not yet. I’;m sure they get lot more in pay than the general populous. City should include those working at the RCMP building.. really??? TWO parking lots for them??
It works this way.
1. City workers par for free wherever they are working, whether they are at City Hall, at CN Centre, at the pools, at the works yard on Ospika, at the Firehalls, the police station, etc.
2. Free parking is a benefit, the same as it is for some workers in the private sector whose place of work pays for their parking costs in an off-street facility downtown as well as at most places in the industrial areas, shopping centres, etc.
3. If they would have to pay, they would likely get a raise to cover the cost of parking.
In the end, people like you would feel better for some strange reason or other. It would do nothing to our taxes. It is a zero sum game.
My point is, this benefit needs to be removed. The gravy train that is the municipal work force is not sustainable in it’s current form.
Seamus, better check my comments. You are the one that is confused.
Also, you are very gòod at side stepping questions that are inconvenient to your mantra. Give me proof that the combustion of fossil fuels does NOT contribute to global warming!!!
No posting of dozens of cherry picked links, just simple proof!
I have never seen any proof that it does, just the straw man argument that because climate is warming by point X degrees therefore manmade co2 is the reason as that is the only equation that has changed (aside from sun activity, volcanoes, and the like – which possibly have no effects whatsoever).
People contribute to global warming and climate change. People are not carbon neutral. More people, more land needs to be cleared for food, more animals raised for food, more waste, more transport of food, more machinery to grow food, people need to burn something for heat, etc. Population of the earth is constantly rising, we need to stop the creation of more people. Simple.
That’s it !! Too many fat humans and too many flatulent cows heating the place up. :)
Oh you got it backwards. Sceptics do not say that that humans have no effect. There is no science, no proven verifiable science showing how much, how little if any at all that life giving co2 affects climate.
Actually not one dire prediction made in the last 30 years of drum beating has come true. Oh by the way the earth has only warmed by .5 to .7 degrees. Wow talk about overheating or would you rather go back to the LIA.
Do our competitors in oil, gas, coal pay a carbon tax, no. So why does our dear leader want to hobble our economy. Oh wait he admires dictatorships.
Prove that carbon tax hobbles the economy?
BC has had a carbon tax for several years. Yet BC has the best economy in Canada. You have a bit of an uphill battle in proving your hypothesis.
Carbon taxes on fuel are not the only thing which impact fuel prices. Fuel prices in Europe have been high for decades. It does not seem to have hobbled many of the countries.
Canada has for many decades had higher gas prices than the USA, yet the USA has had a major recession which we survived in better economic shape than they in spite of our foolish policy of having the USA as the overwhelming trade partner.
Go for it, prove your point!!
Exactly! Another challenge to prove his point! Do not hold your breath because all you will get is the same old stuff!
When a person starts an argument by saying that our Prime Minister is an idiot – how much credibility does that deserve? So the representatives of the remaining 195 countries are all idiots?
It must be a very lonesome person who believes to be the only sane person forced to live surrounded by idiots!
Go to Wikipedia put in carbon tax , then scroll down to the global carbon taxes . Even Zimbabwe pays . To the tune of 3 cents a litre . What an amazing whiner you are . I could understand if you were living in your car but I bet people living in their cars aren’t as big a whiner .
Seamutt, you continue to spout off about Trudeau and his regard for Castro..yet you have no problem with your own admiration for Steven Harper.
He was the closest thing to an elected DICTATOR this country has ever seen.
Good freaking riddance that his HIGHNESS was cut off at the knees and sent packing with his little tail between his legs!
Pg the Paris party is a joke. A taxpayer funded party that happens at least once a year in some exotic location. Canada which emits only 1.6% of man’s life giving c02 generally sends the largest deligations to these first class parties. I am curious if any of the climate related rent seekers up the hill attend. Seem to keep any attendance rather quiet, maybe embarrased by the opulence.
PG China signing is a joke, do not have to do anything until 2030. As if have stated before, look how many coal plants in service and being built. My advice to you, dump CBC.
AGAIN I am concerned about my taxes being wasted.
“AGAIN I am concerned about my taxes being wasted.”
Yeah right. Want to take a polygraph?
There are lots of good examples of governments wasting money.
The National Science Foundation (USA) funded a study to come up with the self evident conclusion that hungry people tend to be more angry and aggressive.
They tested this theory by allowing spouses to poke pins into voodoo dolls as their “hunger” grew.
“Over the course of twenty-one consecutive evenings, 107 couples were given a chance to stick up to 51 pins into a voodoo doll representing their spouse.
The pin-pushing happened in secret, away from the other partner. Participants then recorded the number of pins they poked into the dolls.
Those tests revealed what may already be obvious to many couples: a spouse with low blood sugar was an angrier one, and stuck more pins in the doll.”
So, you may be suffering from low blood sugar. ;-)
Wow, again wow. No debate, wow. No rebuttle, wow. Can’t refute my post so a little hissy fit, wow.
What is there to debate?
You could not debate if you tried to. Show me a place on this site when you actually debated a position versus simply making a statement of your beliefs.
You can’t even do that. In fact, you do not know the difference between making a statement and defending a statement.
1. “The Paris party is a joke.”
That is your opinion to which you are entitled. I am sure that you can find others who agree with you. It does not mean it actually is a joke to others. In a democratic society if you can gather people who understand anything about such conferences and take an opinion poll of whether the conference was a joke, and then tell me the results as verified by a neutral person, then I will agree that you have a point.
2. “A taxpayer funded party that happens at least once a year in some exotic location.”
I have never considered Paris to be an exotic place. Nor Berlin where the first COP (Conference of the Parties) took place in 1995. Yes, as so many conferences, it is an annual conference. To many who have to attend such conferences, it is drudge work if you have ever been a serious attendee at a conference of any international significance.
It is not a party, it is a conference. If you have ever been to one, you likely never gained any information from attending, other than getting drunk. So, immediately you are biased against conferences of any kind.
3. Canada ……. generally sends the largest deligations to these first class parties.”
Give us the relative numbers since the first meeting in 1995. Maybe start with this headline from Dec. 2014 – Canada’s climate inaction leaves it ‘increasingly isolated’ ahead of COP 20.
source = cbc.ca/news/technology/canada-s-climate-inaction-leaves-it-increasingly-isolated-ahead-of-cop-20-1.2853774
4. “I am curious if any of the climate related rent seekers up the hill attend.”
If you are really curious, why don’t you do all of us a favour and find that out for us by picking up a phone and calling UNBC. Contribute something for a change.
5. “China signing is a joke, do not have to do anything until 2030”.
Neither does anyone else. They might commit, but there are no penalties if one does not achieve the goals, nor if one takes teh position Harper took, we will act when others do.
6. “My advice to you, dump CBC”
You do realize, of course, that there are other media that report on such events and issues, including the alt-right media.
BTW, from the article on COP20 comes this statement: A poll released this week shows a majority of Canadians are worried about the impact of climate change on future generations, and more than half support a carbon tax.
Looks like you are in the minority.
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