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Petition calls for licence fees to replace bridge tolls

Gary Hee has started a petition to end bridge tolls, and replacing them with a universal $40 licence plate fee. - Contributed photo
Gary Hee has started a petition to end bridge tolls, and replacing them with a universal $40 licence plate fee.
— image credit: Contributed photo

A man who commutes on the Port Mann Bridge regularly has started a petition, and believes he has come up with an alternative that could remove the “unfair” tolls.

Gary Hee, who lives in Clayton Heights on the Langley/Surrey border, is proposing a $40 fee to be applied to everyone’s licence plate fee.

“As local residents we bear most of the cost while other communities have bridges with no tolls,” said Hee.

He points to how absurd it is that commercial and regular vehicles can use the Coquihalla Highway, the Sea-to-Sky Highway, and the new South Fraser Perimeter Highway for free every day.

“We residents are burdened by this added living expense which reduces our standard of living in one of the most prosperous provinces of Canada,” he said.

Hee has been successful before. He has been campaigning and getting signatures to have a light put in and safety improvements made at the intersection of 196 Street and 72 Avenue. Both the Township of Langley and Surrey have since agreed a light was warranted on the busy road.

Hee said the licence fee has been floated before but hasn’t been looked at for a while.

A controversial $75 car tax was nixed after massive public opposition more than 12 years ago. The provincial government has been asked to consider universal road tolling, but Premier Christy Clark has opposed that. In the meantime, TransLink is again trying to figure out how to pay for all it is doing and the province is looking to create a referendum question, asking the public how they would like to pay for road and transit improvements.

To sign Hee’s petition, go to his website nobridgetollsinbc.com.

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