Big Majority of York Region Residents Give New Car Taxes the Red Light: Nanos Survey

Big Majority of York Region Residents Give New Car Taxes the Red Light: Nanos Survey

TORONTO, October 1, 2018 – A survey conducted by Nanos Research shows an overwhelming majority of York Region residents – 90 percent – oppose or somewhat oppose the idea of York Region implementing a municipal vehicle registration tax. Earlier this year, York Regional Council demanded the province give them more taxing powers including the authority to implement new taxes on vehicles.

A York Region Vehicle Registration Tax would amount to double taxation. Drivers already pay $120 to the Province of Ontario per year, to renew their licence plate. York Regional Council and some candidates running in the October municipal election want York Region to have the ability to charge residents another $100 – $120 on top of the provincial fee.

York Region claims new taxes are required to pay for its annual $220 million infrastructure budget shortfall. When asked what they would like the Region of York to do first to make up this gap, finding efficiencies in administration was the most frequent response at 45 percent. Adding a charge for vehicle licenses was only supported by six per cent and increasing property taxes was supported by five per cent of respondents.

Other highlights of the survey include:

  • Eight in ten residents of York say it is very poor or poor timing to place a new tax on people’s cars.
  • Over nine in ten residents say it is essential or somewhat essential to have a car.
  • More than eight in ten residents are unlikely or somewhat unlikely to support a politician that favors putting taxes on cars to discourage people from owning a car.
  • Over eight in ten residents are unlikely or somewhat unlikely to support a politician who favors Ontario giving municipalities powers to put new taxes on cars.

The full survey can be found here.


“Candidates running in October’s municipal election should make it crystal clear where they stand on new vehicle taxes before Election Day. Families in York Region deserve to know which candidates support the idea of double taxing a household necessity like the family car before casting their ballot.”

– Todd Bourgon, Executive Director
Trillium Automobile Dealers Association


“Too often, the first choice among some politicians is to increase taxes without realizing there is only one taxpayer funding four levels of government. This Nanos Research survey shows the overwhelming majority of York Region residents don’t want new taxes, but a more efficient local government with the will to control municipal expenses and deliver value for money.”

– Frank Notte, Director of Government Relations
Trillium Automobile Dealers Association


“The results of this survey send a clear message to candidates across the York Region that the prospect of a municipal vehicle registration tax is unpopular with motorists across the region.  Studies have shown that motorists in the GTA already pay 70-90% of the costs of the road network through fees and gas taxes. In the GTHA, road users more than cover the full costs of construction, maintenance and policing.  At an estimated annual cost of $120 per vehicle, this proposal would double a motorist’s costs and duplicate the expenses that drivers already pay to the province for a provincially issued license.”

– Elliott Silverstein, Manager, Government Relations
CAA South Central Ontario



  • York Region’s Net Long Term Debt per capita is $2,308 – the highest among Ottawa, Toronto, Waterloo, Peel, Hamilton, Halton and Durham.
  • Toronto is the only municipality in Ontario with the authority to charge a municipal Vehicle Registration Tax (VRT). Since being granted the taxing authority in 2006, Toronto’s VRT was only in effect for only 3 years (2008-2011) of the past 12 years – proving to be very unpopular.
  • The Trillium Automobile Dealers Association represents 1,100 new car dealers across Ontario – including 113 in York Region.
  • The Trillium Automobile Dealers Association commissioned the Nanos Research survey.
  • Nanos Research is one of North America’s premier research and strategy organizations, and the official pollster of record for CTV News – Canada’s largest private broadcaster.

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Contact:  Frank Notte | 905-940-2225