Now, if they just could all ride bikes instead....
City of Vancouver staff urging removal of free parking for Canadian Forces veterans
A motion moved by NPA councillor Melissa De Genova in November 2019 calling on city staff to develop policies that expand free parking for veterans of the Canadian Forces was approved by Vancouver City Council in November 2019.
Nearly a year later, City of Vancouver staff are returning to city council with recommendations that achieve the complete opposite of the motion’s intention.
Not only are city staff not recommending year-round free parking for veterans, but they are urging city council to remove the current provisions for free parking for veterans during the annual week-long period leading up to Remembrance Day starting in 2021.
City Manager Sadhu Johnston argued the bureaucracy is taking this position over how free parking for veterans counters with the municipal government’s position on decreasing car use, and the expected budgetary impact from decreased parking revenues.
“We have many concerns about subsidizing parking for veterans. It incentivizes driving as a way to travel, which is in direct opposition to our climate change and transportation policies. It interferes with our strategy to manage street space through pricing tools,” he wrote in the report.
“It does not support veterans who travel in other ways, such as by transit, walking, or cycling. Veterans are not, in general, a low-income or disadvantaged group, so this does not advance key equity goals and not charging for parking would not support low-income veterans, many of whom may not be able to afford a vehicle. Depending on the direction given by Council, it may also be costly and reduce City revenues.”
On the city’s emerging concept of “equity,” the report adds this counters the city’s new approach to focus its support for “historically disadvantaged communities.”
Currently, vehicles displaying a veteran licence plate are exempted from parking meter fees each year between November 4 and 11. This policy has been in place since 2007.https://dailyhive.com/vancouver/vancouver-canadian-forces-veterans-free-parking?fbclid=IwAR2mvxAwmD_JAbBGtaxOcfwv5E1Mtvq3wvlARsGJotB0Vfhu3W7yLPxIIWAhttps://dailyhive.com/vancouver/vancouver-canadian-forces-veterans-free-parking?fbclid=IwAR2mvxAwmD_JAbBGtaxOcfwv5E1Mtvq3wvlARsGJotB0Vfhu3W7yLPxIIWA- mod edit to make full headline legible -