Squamish-Lillooet Regional District advocates for regional transit at UBCM | Squamish Chief

Squamish-Lillooet Regional District advocates for regional transit at UBCM

Other priorities include highways, parks and broadband connectivity

Squamish-Lillooet Regional District (SLRD) board and senior staff members continued to advocate for regional transit, among other priorities, during meetings with provincial cabinet ministers held prior to the Union of British Columbia Municipalities (UBCM) annual convention this week.

In a Sept. 24 release, the SLRD noted the regional transit committee, which also features representatives from the District of Squamish, Resort Municipality of Whistler, Village of Pemberton, and the Squamish and Lil'wat nations, again pushed for regional transit in the Sea to Sky.

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Although a prior funding model proposal using the existing provincial/municipal cost-sharing formula, rider dares, property tax and a five-cents-per-litre motor-fuel tax was previously rejected, the committee continues to work for a model that is not based solely on property tax, the release said, adding that a motor-fuel tax or some other funding source will be significant.

"We have been working on regional transit for years, not just at the SLRD board table, but with First Nations and three of our member municipalities," board chair Tony Rainbow said in the release. "Now more than ever, we need regional transit."

Other asks from the SLRD were: improvements to Road 40 and the Highline Road; reduced speed limits on rural residential roads; increased capital and operational funding for provincial parks and backcountry areas; and a provincial strategy and funding to help provide high-speed broadband internet to rural areas.

"In 2020, reliable internet service should be available to all British Columbians, but it isn't," Rainbow said in the release. "We'd like to see this be more equitable, as it is a matter of community safety, education, health and economic development."

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