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Metro Council Reaffirms Support for Sheppard Subway Construction; Establishes 1 Per Cent Dedicated Property Tax Increase For 1996

Attention News Editors:

Metro Council Reaffirms Support for Sheppard Subway Construction; Establishes 1 Per Cent Dedicated Property Tax Increase For 1996

 

  
         TORONTO, Feb. 15 /CNW/ - Last night, Metro Council decided to
continue with construction of the 6.4 kilometre Sheppard subway. The
line was initially approved in March 1994 along with the Eglinton
subway line which was deferred by the province in July 1995.
         To assist Metro in finding its 25 per cent share, Council
approved a proposal from Chairman Tonks to establish a 1 per cent tax
for 1996 and 1997 and a reserve exclusively dedicated to funding debt
charges pertaining to the Sheppard subway. The need to continue the
tax in 1998 will be reviewed in 1997. This year, the 1 per cent tax
increase will cost about $7 for a house assessed at the average of
$6,000.
         Councillors stressed the benefits of public transit to the
economy of the area and the need for job creation and development.
``Metro must continue to build for the future,'' said Chairman Alan
Tonks. ``We cannot shrink from the challenge of improving our city.
We cannot stand still. Metro Toronto's residents, transit riders and
the international community demand proof of our confidence in
ourselves.''
         The line is expected to open in the year 2001. It will cost $936
million of which 75 per cent is funded by the province. Councillors
had before them a letter from provincial Transportation Minister Al
Palladini, dated February 13, 1996, indicating that provincial
funding to complete the Sheppard subway would be at 75 per cent of
gross costs.
         Approving the continuation of the subway, shows that gross costs
of $93 million to date were well invested. Finishing the subway will
cost Metro an additional $211 million over six years while the
province is committed to an additional $632 million.
         Today Council will consider
 the remainder of the capital works
program. Council will need to pay particular attention to the backlog
of unfunded road maintenance and transit improvements. The final
operating budget containing the mill rate increase for 1996 will be
debated March 7 and 8.

   For further information: Jane Peatch, (416) 392-8002
   
   10:58e 15-FEB-96




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