Friday, November 26, 2010

"Appropriation, Taxes and Tolls" and now Shadow tolls, Some things never change

Continuing on with the book I borrowed from the Vancouver Public Library called "The Coast Connection", by R.G. Harvey, I've found that the Bibliography is a great source for searching on the internet.


Title: "Frontier to Freeway A short illustrated history of the roads in British Columbia"

"Paying for the road system has gone through many changes over the years. The first official appropriation for road building was $500 in 1854. By 1954, appropriation had risen to $36 million. By 1984, it was $570 million, and in 1989 it was more than $1 billion.

The first appropriation was raised mainly by a tax on liquor, but this was inadequate to cover the heavy expenditures in the wagon road phase and later phases.

Bonded issues and tolls paid for the Cariboo Road. The tolls remained in place for many years. Some of those tolls were collected directly by the contractors building particular sections of the road, as part of the payment for their work.

From 1860 to 1866, statute labour was required even though the original English law had been repealed many years before. Under this system, settlers had to spend six days a year on road work for no pay, or pay the government the financial equivalent. This unpopular measure was repealed in 1866 and replaced with a road tax of $2 per year from each resident male and non-resident property owner. Arrears were charged at 18 per cent interest.

Tolls were again revived in the 1950s to assist in constructing large, expensive bridges and tunnels but were removed in the 1960s. An exception is the Coquihalla Highway, which has had tolls since its opening in 1986. The money collected goes to the province’s general revenue from which, since the 1950s, highways expenditures are drawn."

Search for:  A short illustrated history of roads in British Columbia 1980

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