Missed Chance: Olivia’s Transit and Infrastructure Motion Voted Down

Conservatives Defeat Olivia Chow’s Motion, Reject Calls for Federal Transit and Infrastructure Plan

February 27, 2013

OTTAWA – The federal government has decided not to listen to the broad call for a long-term federal infrastructure plan.

Last night, they defeated NDP Transport and Infrastructure Critic Olivia Chow’s motion in the House of Commons.

Statement by Transport and Infrastructure critic, Olivia Chow, on rejection of her motion

Canadians are tired of being stuck in traffic, being passed by overcrowded buses or having to put up with a lack of public transit. Canada’s economy is suffering from damages of $10 billion a year due to traffic congestion.

Unfortunately, by voting against our motion for a long-term federal plan, the federal government has proven this evening that rising commute times, inadequate transit and crumbling infrastructure are not its priorities.

A predictable, long term, accountable and nonpartisan federal program is essential. There is urgent need to repair our roads and reduce traffic congestion and public transit travel times, which are among the highest among North America.

Sadly, the Conservatives have chosen to ignore calls from municipal leaders, Canada’s business community and everyday commuters. They are the losers in tonight’s vote.

Despite tonight’s outcome, I will continue to work hard to convince the federal government that immediate action is needed to tackle increasing gridlock, aging roads and bridges and failing water systems. Canada’s economy and families cannot afford government inaction on infrastructure and transit.

My invitation to Transport Minister Lebel to ride the Toronto subway with me during rush hour is yet unanswered. Experiencing Canada’s mobility woes first-hand, I hope that the Minister will understand the importance of a long-term federal commitment to infrastructure and public transit.

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