Re: No solution in store, Nov. 25 editorial.
Like most of the public discourse about proposed new truck-parking facilities in South Surrey, your editorial misses a key point.
The for-profit trucking industry and its well-heeled corporate customers derive enormous benefit from the provision of essential infrastructure – taxpayer-funded roads and highways – at little or no direct cost.
Only a minuscule proportion of truck routes are tolled. Proposals for meaningful weight-distance taxes stand little chance against aggressive and well-funded industry lobbying. Taxpayers are therefore on the hook for almost all the capital and maintenance costs of the road network that underpins the trucking industry, whose big rigs do the vast majority of pavement damage.
And yet we hear our municipal representatives framing the debate about a new parking compound in terms of public-policy necessity.
What we really need is clearer thinking.
By what misguided sense of obligation do our municipal representatives imagine that we taxpayers should lead an initiative to provide further benefit to an industry that consistently fails to pay its way?
If a jumbo-sized parking lot is so vital to the trucking industry, let’s arrange to give it the normal-course scrutiny that any other development proposal should receive. In this way we might make not only better environmental decisions, but better economic decisions about sustainable freight transportation through our communities.
Until that happens, where truck parking is a problem, let’s start handing out tickets like we mean it.
Paul Thurston, Surrey
• • •
Re: Diesel spill sparks more criticism, Nov. 4.
Should the taxpayers of Surrey be responsible for providing a parking lot for the trucks of independent truckers, or a luxury truck-park facility in South Surrey?
Surrey council says there is a need.
When a potential trucker takes out a permit to do business in Surrey, is he required to state where he will park his truck when not in use? Is the indicated site inspected to be sure it follows all the rules and guidelines that Surrey requires? If that is done, how would there be a truck-parking problem in Surrey?
Surely the taxpayers of Surrey should not be responsible for providing truck-parking facilities.
If Surrey has overlooked ways and means of alleviating the problem they say exists, perhaps all truckers should have to renew their permits so Surrey will be able to deal with the truck-parking problem.
Mary Davidson, Surrey
A succinct solution
Why not put a truck-parking lot or lots in the developing industrial area? Why not?
O.B. Eccles, Surrey