Offer COE rebates to families with special-needs members
I APPLAUD the Government's efforts in restricting car ownership ("COE categories for cars could be reviewed"; yesterday).
But while car ownership is generally perceived as a luxury, it is a necessity for some families.
As a mother of an autistic child, taking my son for long rides on MRT trains or public buses is a challenge due to his heightened sensory sensitivity to noise and crowds. On long rides, he will often fuss or, worse, suffer a full meltdown to the annoyance of other commuters.
Taking taxis for routine trips is very costly and hard to sustain for an average-income family. Many families with elderly members or those with mental and physical disabilities face the same problem.
Improving Singapore's public transport network and accessibility is of little or no help to us.
At the same time, there is a growing number of households with more than one car, often because they can afford them and not because they need them. To help those who really need a car, some changes could be made to the current system:
- Give priority and certificate of entitlement (COE) rebates to families with members who have special needs, for first-car ownership per household;
- Impose a flat COE rate on first-car ownership per household, with subsequent cars per household subjected to the bidding system; and
- Have a separate COE category for luxury cars.
Chia Su-Yee (Ms)