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Rambling Boater

The future of our canals?

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3 hours ago, IanD said:

Why is this such a bad deal, it's *far* better (and much cheaper) than the one anybody living on land gets?

 

I suspect you are only looking at this subject from your own situation and circumstances  ...........as I am. ...........but It seems our circumstances  are completely different.

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7 minutes ago, peterboat said:

But you arnt on the bread line like people I know, your proposed rise would end their boating lives. So no we are never going to agree, because what we have is better than the nowt we could have with your plan. I can afford to pay but can see the flaw in your idea

He couldnt give a **** about people who would have to leave.

 

He can afford it obviously, so why should he care about people who cannot?

 

Anybody remember Harry Enfield's 'loadsamoney'

 

 

 

 

Edited by The Happy Nomad
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9 hours ago, peterboat said:

But you arnt on the bread line like people I know, your proposed rise would end their boating lives. So no we are never going to agree, because what we have is better than the nowt we could have with your plan. I can afford to pay but can see the flaw in your idea

So you still ignored what I said about exactly the kind of people you're talking about -- that those who genuinely can't afford the fee should have it paid for them by welfare, just like it should be if they were on land? Using this to justify asking all those who can afford it to pay more (like you, and me, and many others) is just plain selfish self-interest. Yes my idea isn't ideal, but it seems to me that it's the only fair way to get more money for CaRT from people who freely admit they've been getting something wonderful for very little money, but don't want to pay more for it. A lot of people and the country as a whole do get benefits from the canals but people who live and cruise on them every day undoubtedly get far more; is it fair that they only pay about a tenth of the CaRT budget?

9 hours ago, peterboat said:

But you arnt on the bread line like people I know, your proposed rise would en

 

Edited by IanD

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9 hours ago, The Happy Nomad said:

He couldnt give a **** about people who would have to leave.

 

He can afford it obviously, so why should he care about people who cannot?

 

Anybody remember Harry Enfield's 'loadsamoney'

 

 

 

 

You're completely misinterpreting what I said -- I do care about people "on the breadline", and keep on saying why they shouldn't pay the higher fee and how this could be done. Why do you keep ignoring this? People who can afford to pay more (and complain about CaRT maintenance) should pay more, they're currently paying very little for the benefits they get. People who can't afford it shouldn't pay more, maybe they should even pay less. How difficult it this to understand? Do I have to say it another 10 times before it gets through, or will go carry on throwing insults?

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4 minutes ago, IanD said:

You're completely misinterpreting what I said -- I do care about people "on the breadline", and keep on saying why they shouldn't pay the higher fee and how this could be done. Why do you keep ignoring this? People who can afford to pay more (and complain about CaRT maintenance) should pay more, they're currently paying very little for the benefits they get. People who can't afford it shouldn't pay more, maybe they should even pay less. How difficult it this to understand? Do I have to say it another 10 times before it gets through, or will go carry on throwing insults?

He does it because he has nothing useful to add to the discussions and its easier to misrepresent what you (and I) have been saying.

He couldn't 'improve' his post count otherwise.

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3 minutes ago, IanD said:

How difficult it this to understand?

I think you have melted his brain.  A terrible thing is cognitive dissonance.

 

I read the words you posted and followed it quite well.  I'd rather the fees didn't get too steep, but they would have to go up quite a lot before I stopped paying them.  If nothing else, the prices of secondhand boats would probably come down quite a bit, attracting more people onto the water who would accept the higher ongoing costs.

 

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22 minutes ago, IanD said:

So you still ignored what I said about exactly the kind of people you're talking about -- that those who genuinely can't afford the fee should have it paid for them by welfare, just like it should be if they were on land? Using this to justify asking all those who can afford it to pay more (like you, and me, and many others) is just plain selfish self-interest. Yes my idea isn't ideal, but it seems to me that it's the only fair way to get more money for CaRT from people who freely admit they've been getting something wonderful for very little money, but don't want to pay more for it. A lot of people and the country as a whole do get benefits from the canals but people who live and cruise on them every day undoubtedly get far more; is it fair that they only pay about a tenth of the CaRT budget?

 

I disagree with you completely Ian ,the state should not be asked to pay the extra licence fee for livaboards  and what about the majority which are leisure boaters they won't get help,! Your idea will just end up with empty muddy ditches weird where locks used to be and no boating for anybody 

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I don't think money is the only issue (despite the world apparently revolving around it). Yes, money pays for someone to do dredging, maintenence of locks, utilities and vegitation etc.

 

However, can't some of this be done by enthusiastic volunteers? If volunteers can renevate canals from scratch (and still are) then why can't maintenence of existing canals be done by volunteers?

 

Is CRT actively preventing this to protect their empire? Again, ANT are a good model to compare with. (Avon Navigation Trust).

 

Surely a trust can work with paid staff and volunteers in harmony? I'd happily chip in where I can.

 

Even cutting the grass and vegitation where we all moor helps. Removing potential blockages from locks helps. Ok, things like dredging and lock repairs involve some training, but it's do-able.

 

 

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1 minute ago, Rambling Boater said:

I don't think money is the only issue (despite the world apparently revolving around it). Yes, money pays for someone to do dredging, maintenence of locks, utilities and vegitation etc.

 

However, can't some of this be done by enthusiastic volunteers? If volunteers can renevate canals from scratch (and still are) then why can't maintenence of existing canals be done by volunteers?

 

Is CRT actively preventing this to protect their empire? Again, ANT are a good model to compare with. (Avon Navigation Trust).

 

Surely a trust can work with paid staff and volunteers in harmony? I'd happily chip in where I can.

 

Even cutting the grass and vegitation where we all moor helps. Removing potential blockages from locks helps. Ok, things like dredging and lock repairs involve some training, but it's do-able.

 

 

 

The cross section of skills I found amongst boaters may mean that given a suitable incentive many such  skills could be readily available, in some cases it might even extend to equipment. The question is what incentive would bring such skills forward. I would suggest a discount on the license fee in exchange for xx hours of work. However that ignores the Health and Safety demands and documentation. I suspect it is those that make CaRT prefer contractors and paid staff.

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Just now, Tony Brooks said:

 

The cross section of skills I found amongst boaters may mean that given a suitable incentive many such  skills could be readily available, in some cases it might even extend to equipment. The question is what incentive would bring such skills forward. I would suggest a discount on the license fee in exchange for xx hours of work. However that ignores the Health and Safety demands and documentation. I suspect it is those that make CaRT prefer contractors and paid staff.

Often people don't need a financial incentive. Just the desire to help keep our canals going or to learn new skills and get some fresh air may be enough.

 

I'm sure many live aboards wouid be happy to act like lengthsmen in return for being allowed to moor in the same place. All year round CC'ers are in a good position to report issues and do basic repairs.  I wouln't want anything financial  in return.

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49 minutes ago, Alan de Enfield said:

He does it because he has nothing useful to add to the discussions and its easier to misrepresent what you (and I) have been saying.

He couldn't 'improve' his post count otherwise.

Disagreeing with both you and Alan is simply not the same as 'having nothing useful to add'.

 

Though of course I can understand why you would think that. I have no interest in improving my post count.

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8 minutes ago, Rambling Boater said:

Often people don't need a financial incentive. Just the desire to help keep our canals going or to learn new skills and get some fresh air may be enough.

 

I'm sure many live aboards wouid be happy to act like lengthsmen in return for being allowed to moor in the same place. All year round CC'ers are in a good position to report issues and do basic repairs.  I wouln't want anything financial  in return.

I am sure that is correct but I was thinking of more major projects that require more than basic DIY skills.

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2 minutes ago, Tony Brooks said:

I am sure that is correct but I was thinking of more major projects that require more than basic DIY skills.

Restoring canals (e.g Wendover arm, Monty etc) are major projects and are being done mainly using volunteers. Maintenence of an existing canal probably isn't much harder.

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1 hour ago, IanD said:

You're completely misinterpreting what I said -- I do care about people "on the breadline", and keep on saying why they shouldn't pay the higher fee and how this could be done. Why do you keep ignoring this? People who can afford to pay more (and complain about CaRT maintenance) should pay more, they're currently paying very little for the benefits they get. People who can't afford it shouldn't pay more, maybe they should even pay less. How difficult it this to understand? Do I have to say it another 10 times before it gets through, or will go carry on throwing insults?

Ok fair enough, you say you 'care' fair enough.

 

However the problem is your strategy is counterintuitive and will potentially reduce the licence income stream for CRT. As it reduces as more boaters leave the system then the more the licence fee will need to be further increased and on it goes till boating is something only the very rich can afford.

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1 minute ago, The Happy Nomad said:

Nice.

On lots of things we disagree on this subject I find we are in total agreement I am worried that CRT read these threads and wonder if they could get away with a doubling of the license fee!! Well I could afford it but many on my moorings could not, also what makes zian and Alan so sure it will be spent on improving the system? It might be used to expand their property portfolio? I would not like a cut where only shiny boaters go I love the diversity of it long may it continue 

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Just now, Rambling Boater said:

Restoring canals (e.g Wendover arm, Monty etc) are major projects and are being done mainly using volunteers. Maintenence of an existing canal probably isn't much harder.

I think there is a difference but it could be overcome. The restorations seem to be in the hands of  a comparative small group of people with the same outcome in view and an organisation. To reproduce this system wide would require a similar setup. Would CaRT concur? Would volunteers work happily under CaRT managers? How would then interests of existing CRT staff be safeguarded? 

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15 hours ago, magpie patrick said:

There have been studies that have looked at licence fees and other ways of extracting money from boaters and others - obvious ones are mooring fees and marina connection charges for example. Demand is to some extent inelastic because a boat is a fixed asset that isn't easy to offload in a hurry, so in the short term you can get away with whopping great increases, but in the long term it doesn't work, because numbers do go down albeit gradually, and CRT (and others) already have a bit of a problem with boats that not only aren't licensed but won't be because of cost and BSS requirements - whack the charges up and 3 or 4 years down the line that problem will multiply. 

 

Given this cut-off (the curve of indifference) the benefit of big licence fee rises is questionable - if you whack up licence fees by 100%, and ten years later the number of boaters has reduced by half (I'm using these figures to make the maths easier) then you end up where you started in revenue terms but with fewer boaters - who has benefitted? Also fewer boaters means less spend by boaters means a contraction in canal related businesses with consequent job losses. 

 

What is needed is a funding model that recognises the economic benefit of the canals that the navigation authority can't capture. Charging boaters ever increasing amounts doesn't achieve this. 

Yes, but you don't the honeypot benefit without the network

I suspect the difficulty lies in the fact (at least until March 2020) we live in a me-society where social benefit is disregarded, even derided ('no such thing as society') Hence the reaction from those who pay the taxes is always "but I don't use them" - sadly they often only realise too late when they do want a service that, pay-when-using, is very expensive.

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1 hour ago, peterboat said:

I disagree with you completely Ian ,the state should not be asked to pay the extra licence fee for livaboards  and what about the majority which are leisure boaters they won't get help,! Your idea will just end up with empty muddy ditches weird where locks used to be and no boating for anybody 

Come on, you can't have it both ways! In one breath you say the problem with my proposal is that people on the breadline will be driven off the canals, than when I say that the state should pay for those who can't afford it -- just like on land -- you object to this !!!

 

Please explain why you think my proposal -- people who can afford to pay more (and are paying very little now compared to other walks of life) do so, those who can't don't -- drive everyone off the canals? We're talking about an amount which is a fraction of the cost of living increase they'd see by moving back to landside. To compare to land living, if mortgage costs go up 10% will this drive everyone to sell their houses -- and if so, where do they live then?

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22 minutes ago, The Happy Nomad said:

Ok fair enough, you say you 'care' fair enough.

 

However the problem is your strategy is counterintuitive and will potentially reduce the licence income stream for CRT. As it reduces as more boaters leave the system then the more the licence fee will need to be further increased and on it goes till boating is something only the very rich can afford.

Why would boaters leave the system? Poor people wouldn't pay more, the better-off would pay more but still far less than they'd pay on land (or the value of what they're getting), and should feel a nice glow in their hearts to see how well CaRT has spent the extra money on improving the canal system -- in fact a bter-maintained system might even attract more people to the canals if they're no longer put off by all the tales of woe about blockages/stoppages/running aground/water shortages/lock failures...

 

I have a suspicion that people like you objecting on behalf of others (like those "on the breadline", who I *specifically* said shouldn't pay more) are actually objecting because they don't want to pay more themselves even if they could afford it -- but saying this straight out sounds selfish (because it is), so let's claim it's all about the deserving poor 😉

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8 minutes ago, IanD said:

Come on, you can't have it both ways! In one breath you say the problem with my proposal is that people on the breadline will be driven off the canals, than when I say that the state should pay for those who can't afford it -- just like on land -- you object to this !!!

 

Please explain why you think my proposal -- people who can afford to pay more (and are paying very little now compared to other walks of life) do so, those who can't don't -- drive everyone off the canals? We're talking about an amount which is a fraction of the cost of living increase they'd see by moving back to landside. To compare to land living, if mortgage costs go up 10% will this drive everyone to sell their houses -- and if so, where do they live then?

Its simple the vast majority of boaters are leisure boaters they won't get any help! You are the one that's not thinking it through 

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29 minutes ago, peterboat said:

On lots of things we disagree on this subject I find we are in total agreement I am worried that CRT read these threads and wonder if they could get away with a doubling of the license fee!! Well I could afford it but many on my moorings could not, also what makes zian and Alan so sure it will be spent on improving the system? It might be used to expand their property portfolio? I would not like a cut where only shiny boaters go I love the diversity of it long may it continue 

How many times do I have to repeat the part about people who genuinely can't afford it not paying it?

 

This isn't an attempt to "clean up" the canals or drive people off them, it's exactly the opposite -- a better-maintained system might even persuade more people to holiday on them or even live on them. And objecting that the money might be spent "on the wrong things" is always trotted out -- so does that mean CaRT shouldn't get any extra money to maintain the system from anywhere, because they might piss it up the wall?

 

It sounds like you're resigned to the system continuing to slide hopelessly downhill because "nothing can be done about it" -- I thought you were one of the future-minded boaters given your (admirable) stance on electric power?

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41 minutes ago, peterboat said:

Its simple the vast majority of boaters are leisure boaters they won't get any help! You are the one that's not thinking it through 

I thought you just said they were "on your moorings" -- doesn't that make them liveaboards? If not -- they're leisure boaters who live on the land and use the boat for holidays -- then they can afford a bigger license fee, since they can afford a boat *and* a house they can hardly cry poverty, and the added cost is small compared to owning a holiday boat anyway.

 

You seem to be clutching at any straw to make out that poor people will be disadvantaged one way or another. What I'm really proposing is that the license fee should be graduated just like income tax (in theory, ignoring tax havens), so the poor pay less towards the cost of the canals (maybe even less than now?) and the rich pay more than they do now. What exactly is your objection to this -- is it that you'll pay more?

 

I certainly will every time I hire a boat or if I retire soon and buy one, I'd be happy to do that knowing that I was helping to renew the canal system. How about you?

Edited by IanD
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1 minute ago, IanD said:

How many times do I have to repeat the part about people who genuinely can't afford it not paying it?

 

This isn't an attempt to "clean up" the canals or drive people off them, it's exactly the opposite -- a better-maintained system might even persuade more people to holiday on them or even live on them. And objecting that the money might be spent "on the wrong things" is always trotted out -- so does that mean CaRT shouldn't get any extra money to maintain the system from anywhere, because they might piss it up the wall?

 

It sounds like you're resigned to the system continuing to slide hopelessly downhill because "nothing can be done about it" -- I thought you were one of the future-minded boaters given your (admirable) stance on electric power?

Other than some dredging for flood purposes its working for mr at the moment.  Anyway we will never agree on this so I am leaving the discussion, with a thought for you if the state pays for the canals directly like now or indirectly via DWP with all the hassle for the boater what's the difference? Bearing in mind my other half is a fraud investigator for DWP 

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Just now, peterboat said:

Other than some dredging for flood purposes its working for mr at the moment.  Anyway we will never agree on this so I am leaving the discussion, with a thought for you if the state pays for the canals directly like now or indirectly via DWP with all the hassle for the boater what's the difference? Bearing in mind my other half is a fraud investigator for DWP 

The difference is that if the state pays for the canals directly everyone gets a "free ride" (pays far less than the cost), including those who aren't on the breadline (who don't deserve/need it), and everyone else in the country pays for them to enjoy themselves on the canals -- which many people would justifiably object to.

 

What's your real objection to a graduated (with income/wealth) license fee, which is what I'm proposing? It works in most other walks of life and would be seen as fair...

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