Real Estate Coalition releases report detailing harms of parking tax;
meets with Transit Tool Blue Ribbon Panel
TORONTO, Oct. 10, 2013 /CNW/ - A real estate and business coalition
released a report today detailing how businesses in the Greater Toronto
and Hamilton Area (GTHA) could be the target of an expensive,
complicated and unworkable new parking tax. The research report was
developed in response to Metrolinx's proposed parking tax as a
component of its strategy to finance its planned transit
infrastructure. The report clearly outlines the harm to business and
negative impact on competitiveness of business from a parking tax.
The research report is being presented today by the coalition to the
Ontario Blue Ribbon Panel tasked with investigating how to fund
Metrolinx's The Big Move.
The report outlines how the parking tax would significantly increase the
operating cost for businesses and non-residential property owners by
applying a levy on all off-street, commercial and retail parking
spaces. It would be an additional tax on off-street parking and would
apply to all businesses, big or small. Metrolinx has claimed the tax
will influence the behaviour of motorists, however the study concludes
that the cost of the tax will be borne by the business owners and not
be transparent to drivers, and will therefore not have any meaningful
influence on behaviour.
"The proposed parking tax by Metrolinx is a blow to businesses in the
Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area, who already face a number of
challenges," says Carolyn Lane, VP, Membership, Marketing &
Communications of the Real Property Association of Canada (REALpac).
"While we support greater investment in public transit, we believe that
financing tools should be fair and transparent and not compromise
economic growth of the business community in the GTHA."
The report titled Potential Economic Impacts of Proposed Business Parking Levy in the
Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area was prepared by Altus Group Economic Consulting on behalf of a
coalition of real estate associations including Real Property
Association of Canada (REALpac), Building Owners and Managers
Association Toronto (BOMA), International Council Shopping Centers
(ICSC), Toronto Financial District Business Improvement Area, NAIOP
Greater Toronto Chapter and The Building Industry and Land Development
Association (BILD). Together, these organizations represent over $200
billion in real property investment and management in the GTHA.
The report demonstrates that the tax structure would be a poor choice
for financing public transit investment. It highlights several
weaknesses in the proposal including:
It is unlikely to reduce the number of cars driving to Toronto and GTHA businesses due to its lack of transparency to individual drivers.
The additional costs will be paid by the property owners and
businesses, not drivers;
The revenue generated will not meet the Metrolinx target of $350
It is double taxation. Property owners already pay property tax and this
would be an additional tax;
It makes the GTHA economy less competitive because financial resources
are focused on paying taxes and not investing in the local economy;
Is not transparent to users; and
It's costly to administer - Vancouver launched a similar tax and
withdrew it because of high administrative costs and limited benefits.
"The Business Parking Levy is a regressive tax that punishes business
and reduces competitiveness, which will have a negative impact on the
GTHA's economy", added Carolyn Lane.
To view the full report visit the REALpac website at www.realpac.ca > Advocacy > Submissions to Government > 2013
About the Real Property Association of Canada
REALpac is Canada's premier industry association for investment real
property leaders. Our mission is to collectively influence public
policy, to educate government and the public, and to ensure stable and
beneficial real estate capital and property markets in Canada.
REALpac Members currently own in excess of $180 Billion CAD in real
estate assets located in the major centres across Canada. Members
include real estate investment trusts, publicly traded and large
private companies, banks, brokerages, crown corporations, investment
dealers, life companies, lenders, and pension funds. To learn more
about REALpac visit www.realpac.ca.
About NAIOP - Toronto Chapter
NAIOP is the Commercial Real Estate Development Association and is the
leading organization for developers, owners and related professionals
in office, industrial and mixed‐use real estate. NAIOP comprises 15,500
members in North America. NAIOP advances responsible commercial real
estate development and advocates for effective public policy. For more
information, visit www.naiop.org.
The Greater Toronto Chapter of NAIOP, founded in 1977, has become the
premier ʺmeeting placeʺ for a diverse and influential mix of the
commercial real estate industryʹs top companies and top performers.
About BOMA Toronto
The Building Owners and Managers Association of the Greater Toronto Area
(BOMA Toronto) is a not-for-profit organization established in 1917.
BOMA Toronto's membership includes over 750 real estate professionals,
representing 80 per cent of all commercial and industrial real estate
companies in the GTA and beyond. These individuals are all leading
building owners, property and facility managers, developers, leasing
agents, and service providers. BOMA Toronto helps members ensure tenant
satisfaction, maximize profits, and enhance asset values for building
owners and investors through market intelligence, education,
networking, and government advocacy.
About ICSC - International Council of Shopping Centres
Founded in 1957, ICSC is the premier global trade association of the
shopping centre industry. Its more than 58,000 members in over 90
countries include shopping centre owners, developers, managers,
marketing specialists, investors, retailers and brokers, as well as
academics and public officials. As the global industry trade
association, ICSC links with more than 25 national and regional
shopping centre councils throughout the world.
With more than 1,400 members, BILD, formed through the merger of the
Greater Toronto Home Builders' Association and Urban Development
Institute/Ontario is the voice of the land development, home building
and professional renovation industry in the Greater Toronto Area. We
are proudly affiliated with the Ontario and Canadian Home Builders'
About Toronto Financial District Business Improvement Area
The Toronto Financial District BIA was formed in 2011 with the mandate
of promoting economic development in the Financial District. Funding is
received through a special levy on commercial real estate within our
area. Annual budgets are approved by our membership at an Annual
General Meeting and approved by Toronto's City Council. FD BIA is
independently managed by a Board of Management comprised of
representatives from member organizations.
SOURCE: Real Property Association of Canada
For further information:
Carolyn Lane - VP, Membership, Marketing & Communications, REALpac