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I'm in favour of free public transit. A number of cities in the world have free public transit in the downtown core, but I think we should make the entire system free. Unfortunately, we will never get honest and accurate financial numbers from our civic, provincial, or federal governments. For example, does anyone know what the Evergreen Line is costing? The government refuses to divulge a single number. Does "evergreen" mean that the government and their contractor friends get to shovel money in their pockets forever?

For example, does anyone know how much the COMPASS system cost to install? It tooks years longer than announced, and still has bugs. The original press release said it would be $170 million or so to get it up and running. The system was intended to stop an estimated $6 million a year in fare evasions. Really? At $6 mil a year, they were happy to blow over 28 years of imaginary "fare evasion recovery" to purchase this system. I can guarantee you it cost double what they said, never mind the perpetual maintenance and upgrades required. It will never pay for itself.

With a free transit system, imagine all the money that would be saved on not paying for or maintaining something like COMPASS, nor ticket printing and distribution, money collection and accounting, toll gate and ticket printer purchase, installation and maintenance, and of course by not needing transit police to hassle folks for tickets. Every member of the public could hop on and hop off any transit vehicle, a true democracy.

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