Conservatives Choke Air Travel through High Fees, Airport Rent
October 4, 2012
With Conservatives treating passengers and airports like cash cows, it’s no wonder Canadians are voting with their feet.
Ms. Olivia Chow (Trinity—Spadina, NDP):
Mr. Speaker, five million Canadians go to U.S. airports to fly because the flights there are cheaper. Why? Because the Conservatives treat airports as cash cows and charge huge fees.
Some hon. members: Oh, oh!
The Speaker: Order, please. The hon. member for Trinity—Spadina has the floor now.
Ms. Olivia Chow:
As a result, according to the Canadian Airports Council, Canada loses 11,000 jobs and $240 million in tax revenue. When will this minister reduce the job-cutting tax on airports, tell us he loves Canada and keep the jobs and flights here in Canada?
Hon. Denis Lebel (Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities and Minister of the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec, CPC):
Mr. Speaker, as I understand my colleague, the opposition is asking to use taxpayer dollars to subsidize air travel. It is rich to hear the New Democrats on this when they want to create a carbon tax of $21 billion. It is with that they want to pay it. Here in Canada, we do not use taxpayer money to subsidize this industry. That is a user-pay principle system and we will continue in that way.