Mobilization against toll on new Champlain Bridge

NDP MPs on the South Shore are rallying their constituents this afternoon in their bid to convince the Harper government to abort its plan to impose tolls on the new Champlain Bridge.

NDP MP for Brossard-La Prairie Hoang Mai, his fellow MPs and volunteers are going door-to-door, handing out leaflets and gathering names for a petition.

Mai, who is also transport critic, said his constituents are upset that the Harper conservatives imposed the toll in an omnibus bill and ignore not only their concerns and opposition, but those of regional mayors and boards of trade.

"Their concern is, first of all, they've never been consulted. They haven't heard anything in respect to why there needs to be a toll and what will be the impact on other bridges," Mai told CJAD 800 News.

"There's a lot of concern for the people in the riding that, why should they have to pay for a bridge that is the busiest bridge in Canada but also is important for the economy of Canada."

As recently as this past week, Prime Minister Stephen Harper has reinforced his government's resolve to charge tolls on the new bridge, insisting that Quebec knew it would have to contribute. Mai said he doesn't understand Harper's stubborness.

"I call it,.. I won't use the words that I actually use, but it's basically bullying. He's telling us, if you don't pay for the bridge, then you'll continue using the old bridge," Mai said.

Mai said they're also calling for the numbers and impact studies to back up the arguments for a toll bridge.

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  1. Joe posted on 05/03/2014 12:51 PM
    Who is paying for this bridge? Is Quebec, Montreal or anyone else close to it? NO, the Federal Government is. That means that they therefore are the owners. It also means that if you want to use their bridge you must pay a toll. That I would think is quite easy to understand. Not to worry though, there is a solution. If you really want a bridge that does not have tolls then Quebec, Montreal and all those that would use it should build it with your money. Problem solved except you cannot because there is no money. Pay the tolls and stop being little children.
  2. Andrew posted on 05/03/2014 01:25 PM
    Nothing is for free, Harper is right, it's enough of spending without accountability, especially in Quebec, if you cannot afford it then keep the old bridge, if you want a new bridge then pay for it
  3. Marguerite posted on 05/03/2014 01:45 PM
    I see nothing wrong with the federal government imposing tolls on the new bridge. The money has to come from somewhere so why not from the people who will be using this bridge. There were tolls in the past on the Champlain to maintain the bridge and then they were removed and look what happened to the bridge.
  4. SStM posted on 05/03/2014 05:29 PM
    Here's an example that serves as a legitimate guide although the price ought to be lower for Montreal. In New York City : To cross the George Washington Bridge or use the tunnels from New Jersey, it costs $9.00 for "E-ZPass" off peak hours, $11 "E-ZPass" during peak hours , and $13 Cash at all hours. There are "E-ZPass" discounts for low emission green cars and car pool plans. Trucks cost more.
    The toll is ONLY one way. It is ALWAYS FREE to leave NYC It only costs to drive into city. It seems legitimate. Tax payers of the Island of Montreal and elsewhere in Canada should not be subsidizing those who enjoy the tax breaks that come with living off island but benefit from the working in and using the Island of Montreal.
  5. Paul Allen posted on 05/04/2014 10:36 AM
    There should be tolls on the Champlain - if only to reduce the number of cars coming onto the island. The residents get a huge break living on the south shore by 1) paying less for their homes and 2) paying much less in municipal tax. South shore residents should not expect to coast into town for free.
  6. Arch posted on 05/04/2014 01:29 PM
    Victoria Bridge opened in 1859
    Jacques bridge opened in 1930
    These bridges are still being used.
    So why is the Champlain bridge opened in 1962 falling apart?
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