(As posted to my Gazette blog)
Perhaps I should be named Finance Minister of this province because, really, there wouldn’t be a $2.5-billion deficit for long with my guaranteed plan to fill the coffers of the Quebec treasury.
How would I do it, you’re asking, when all the other economists, politicians and such are scratching their heads.
Gee, it’s so simple — something I suggested in a post a while ago. Maybe now — with taxpayers about to see our government borrow $2.5 billion this year, and another projected $1.75 billion next year, to cover expenses — Madame Marois and company will look at my plan.
Here it is: install photo-radar detectors at one-kilometre intervals on every highway and every major artery in the province, and reap the financial windfalls in fines from speeding drivers. I bet that $2.5-billion deficit would be covered in one week, perhaps in one day — because you know that few, if any, people obey speed limits in this province.
Of course, the province would have to change the demerit point system. After all, if drivers are ticketed for every photo-radar detector infraction — i.e. at one-kilometre intervals — they could easily amass several tickets on one outing, enough to see their driver’s licences suspended under the current demerit point system. Example: A 60- kilometre joyride down the Laurentian autoroute could result in 60 speeding tickets worth many thousands for government coffers. Quebec certainly wouldn’t want to sideline these speeding drivers . . . heck, the government would want them to speed. So, the demerit system could be changed to eliminate point losses for speeding unless it is deemed to be dangerous enough to cause an accident.
Now, drivers, don’t send me hate mail. You wouldn’t have to pay speeding fines . . . if you don’t speed. It is totally voluntary. Speed, and help reduce the deficit. Or, don’t speed, and book yourself a trip south in the winter.
And, hey, it’s not like anyone doesn’t know that speeding is against traffic laws. I mean, nobody speeds when they see a police car (except for the police car).
As for the cost of the photo-radar detectors: I’m sure the companies that make them would happily donate them to the province for, say, a 5-percent cut of the fines for a year. There’s plenty of speeders’ money to go around.
P.S. On a more serious note, please don’t drink and drive this holiday season, or at any other time of the year. Hire a taxi, or call Nez Rouge, or take the bus . . .