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Ontario will remove Toronto vehicle tax by Jan. 1 if new council agrees: Wynne

TORONTO – Transportation Minister Kathleen Wynne says the province will help Toronto’s new city council if they decide to drop the vehicle registration tax.

The provincial government collects the $60 tax, which Mayor-elect Rob Ford has vowed to kill as soon as possible.

Wynne says the new city council is meeting Dec. 1, when Ford officially takes over as the city’s new mayor.

She says she wants to make it clear that if council decides to kill the tax, the province can stop collecting it as soon as Jan. 1.

It would require the province to change its computer system and paperwork in order to remove the tax when drivers renew their licence plates.

Wynne says she wanted to clarify the issue because questions have been raised about whether the province can do it that quickly.

“We’ll be prepared and ready to make the necessary IT changes so there won’t be any time lag,” Wynne said.

“We want to be clear that we want to work with the city, that we want the same kind of collaboration that we’ve had over the last seven years really.”

Wynne said she’s already talked to Karen Stintz, a city councillor who is Ford’s choice for chair of the Toronto Transit Commission.

The position hasn’t been confirmed yet, but Wynne said they had an initial conversation to “establish a good working relationship.”

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