Financing Infrastructure: Who Should Pay?

17 Pages Posted: 7 Dec 2017

See all articles by Richard M. Bird

Richard M. Bird

University of Toronto - Joseph L. Rotman School of Management; Georgia State University - Andrew Young School of Public Policy

Enid Slack

University of Toronto Munk Centre for International Studies

Date Written: December 4, 2017

Abstract

Most current discussion of the infrastructure gap in Canada today often amounts to little more than a plea for someone else to pay the bills. However, although there are some reasons for higher-level governments to provide some local infrastructure projects, in the end, the bill must be paid either by user charges or by taxing someone and, whenever feasible, user charges are better. What we should do – make users pay whenever possible – is clear. In fact, however, we seldom do so. In this paper, drawing heavily on our recent book we discuss briefly why users should pay, why they seldom do, and how we may perhaps do better in the future.

Keywords: Infrastructure, User Charges

JEL Classification: H27, H44, H71

Suggested Citation

Bird, Richard Miller and Slack, Enid, Financing Infrastructure: Who Should Pay? (December 4, 2017). Rotman School of Management Working Paper No. 3083743. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3083743 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3083743

Richard Miller Bird (Contact Author)

University of Toronto - Joseph L. Rotman School of Management ( email )

105 St. George Street
Toronto, Ontario M5S 3E6 M5S1S4
Canada
905-274-8841 (Phone)

Georgia State University - Andrew Young School of Public Policy

International Studies Program
Atlanta, GA 30303-3083
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.aysps.gsu.edu

Enid Slack

University of Toronto Munk Centre for International Studies ( email )

Toronto, Ontario
Canada

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