- Money (taxes) collected from the opportunistic licensing of public and private transport, shouldn't it be returned in the form of infrastructure to encourage cycling or other forms of healthy, nonpolluting commute options e.g. walking etc?
Correct me if I'm wrong but I understand that SBS/ TIBs (public) bus services probably have to pay COE, road tax and ERP whilst operating their respective public bus services, MRT also has to pay LTA royalties for the use of the MRT carriages and tracks, +/- physical infrastructure.
In 'Nine private bus operators bid to run City Direct routes' [ST, 03Sept2013]: "Transtar Travel, along with four of the nine, also vied for the Jurong West City Direct tender... That two-year contract was won by ComfortDelGro Bus for about $1.06 million. ": "S$1.06million" was collected from the winning bidder for a contract to provide 'public transport'.
According to 'The COE money making machine (BY DAVID R. HARDOON)' the ballpark average COE revenue is between S$1 to 2 billion p.a. (chart) whilst the 'Singapore FY2012 Budget Highlights' (pdf link), Chart2.1 shows 'Motor Vehicle Related Taxes' to be S$1.8B and 'Vehicle Quota Premiums' to be S$2.0B for FY2011. (amounting to approx 4% of govt revenue each (Chart1.1)).
Road use related taxes can only rise as numerically more citizens, PRs and 'foreign talents' strive to own cars in Singapore, whilst belly bulges (obesity.pict) exceed exercise rates as people work longer office hours just to afford public or private transport to or back from work. (Global warming will also make air-con a costly luxury)
In regard to healthcare expenditure, "By 2050, Singapore may have as many as one million diabetics. Every one in two people, by age 70, will be diabetic - up from one in three today" '1m diabetics by 2050 as Singaporeans get older, fatter' [ST, 02Oct2012]. Given the socialization of healthcare costs through 'MedishieldLife' insurance national risk pooling, I wonder how costly subscription to MedishieldLife (a compulsory scheme) would eventually be.
In its letter to myself in LTA/CC/PCF/FB/F20.000.000/13623/VT (dtd29Jan2010), LTA gave a whole bunch of legalese and excuses why proper bus lanes couldn't be implemented and why public cycling on roads should not be actively encouraged (focusing upon defending their lousy band aid standard 'Give way to buses scheme').
Unfortunately, no matter how efficient LTA might think its public transport to be, the truth is "Minister of State for Transport Josephine Teo revealed ... bus speeds have gone down from 19.1kmh in 2007 to 17.8kmh...." - see full discussion at 'Public transport in Singapore?: Ride bicycle is faster.' [HWZ18Jan2012]
Indeed Singapore is a playground for the rich. For the rest of us, our freedom to commute freely on bicycles is discouraged. We are promised affordable healthcare in a society where "Every one in two people, by age 70, will be diabetic".
Traffic will certainly grid lock as the LTA relies desperately upon flimsy, conflicting, ad-hoc/band-aid traffic schemes (such as 'Give Way to Buses scheme' which results in delays consequent of more accidents) whilst striving to optimize license fees collected from public transport operators.
The state in its efforts to enrich its coffers, has both held hostage and moneytised the health, safety and freedom of its people. Singapore is not the state to live in.
More for cycling, more for freedom please.
Singapore, public, transport, licensing, tax, fees, poverty, freedom, cycling, MRT, LTA, affordability, costs, government, privatized,
"I'm Hungry": "Stop talking politics":
In return for the "first class political leadership", we pay our leaders very well:
The future of the average Singaporean moving forward:[pict source]