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Results: 1 - 15 of 260
View Pierre-Luc Dusseault Profile
NDP (QC)
View Pierre-Luc Dusseault Profile
2015-06-05 11:08 [p.14641]
Mr. Speaker, on April 29, my Motion No. 553 was adopted unanimously by the House. I would like to thank all members once again for their support. The House sent a clear message to the Minister of Transport, asking her to do her job and present, as soon as possible, the mechanisms promised two years ago.
When this motion was adopted five weeks ago, it gave a great deal of hope to the people of Sherbrooke. Unfortunately, this hope is fading because this government has yet to take action. My region is clearly at the bottom of the Conservatives' list of priorities, and that is deplorable. That is a shame, a real shame.
The people of Sherbrooke deserve a government that listens to them and moves quickly to meet their needs. That is exactly what we are going to give them after the next general election, when the first NDP government takes power.
View Pierre-Luc Dusseault Profile
NDP (QC)
View Pierre-Luc Dusseault Profile
2015-06-03 15:08 [p.14535]
Mr. Speaker, although the House unanimously adopted my motion regarding non-designated airports on April 29, the government has yet to take action and has said nothing on this issue. This motion called on the House to create, as soon as possible, a mechanism that would allow for security screenings at non-designated airports, such as the Sherbrooke airport. The people of Sherbrooke are entitled to an airport that helps our region's economy flourish. They are also entitled to answers from the Minister of Transport.
How is it that nothing has been announced five weeks after my motion was adopted? What is the Minister of Transport doing about this?
View Lisa Raitt Profile
CPC (ON)
View Lisa Raitt Profile
2015-06-03 15:09 [p.14535]
Mr. Speaker, we have been working on this issue far longer than the member has put forth his motion in the House of Commons. In fact, that is why we are so far along in the curve and having these discussions on a one-to-one basis with airports that are interested in taking the opportunity to have a pilot project with respect to being able to pay for CATSA services.
We will update the airports as we move along, but this is really a matter for Transport Canada officials to discuss with the local area and not a matter for political interference.
View Pierre-Luc Dusseault Profile
NDP (QC)
View Pierre-Luc Dusseault Profile
2015-05-08 11:50 [p.13659]
Mr. Speaker, on April 29, 2015, the House unanimously adopted Motion No. 553, which I sponsored. This motion seeks to support the economic development of many cities and regions across the country. The House of Commons has spoken. Like the Prime Minister, the Minister of Transport must act as quickly as possible to set up a mechanism whereby non-designated airports, such as the Sherbrooke airport, can have access to security screening services.
Will the minister quickly introduce this new mechanism—and I do mean quickly—or will she continue to put off taking care of my region's economic development?
View Jeff Watson Profile
CPC (ON)
View Jeff Watson Profile
2015-05-08 11:50 [p.13659]
Mr. Speaker, our government is committed to ensuring that Canada's aviation security system supports economic growth.
If screening has to be carried out at non-designated airports or if it is not required for security purposes, another source of funding must be established. The minister asked her officials to develop a mechanism whereby non-designated, low-risk airports are able to obtain security screening services on a cost-recovery basis.
View Pierre-Luc Dusseault Profile
NDP (QC)
View Pierre-Luc Dusseault Profile
2015-04-29 15:53 [p.13199]
Mr. Speaker, I have the honour to present a petition signed by a number of Sherbrooke residents last Saturday. They are calling on the members of the House of Commons to support my Motion No. 553, which we will vote on this evening, because economic development in Sherbrooke is at stake.
If this motion is adopted and is acted on by the Conservative government, it will certainly help Sherbrooke acquire the tools it needs to develop the Sherbrooke airport. The petitioners urge all members to vote in favour of Motion No. 553 this evening.
View Andrew Scheer Profile
CPC (SK)
View Andrew Scheer Profile
2015-04-29 18:18 [p.13216]
The House will now proceed to the taking of the deferred recorded division on Motion No. 553 under private members' business.
View Hoang Mai Profile
NDP (QC)
View Hoang Mai Profile
2015-04-28 14:45 [p.13132]
Mr. Speaker, the government's complacency when it comes to aviation safety is troubling.
The Transportation Safety Board of Canada report released yesterday is very clear: the current approach to oversight is not enough to address unsafe practices and conditions. If Transport Canada does not adopt an approach that combines audits and inspections, the risk of accidents may increase.
The government has cut the transportation safety budget by more than 20%. When is it going to take Canadians' safety seriously?
View Lisa Raitt Profile
CPC (ON)
View Lisa Raitt Profile
2015-04-28 14:45 [p.13132]
Mr. Speaker, first of all we want to thank the Transportation Safety Board for its report wherein it found that the Buffalo Airways airline was found to not be following the rules. We find this to be absolutely unacceptable.
Safety management systems are internationally known as the gold standard. That is what we employ here in Canada. In 2012, Transport Canada developed a civil aviation action plan to ensure that oversight was as robust as needed for its mandate. We will continue to monitor the implementation of these changes that Transport Canada is bringing about, and we will not hesitate to use every tool that we have in order to ensure that Transport Canada is carrying out the mandate.
View Hoang Mai Profile
NDP (QC)
View Hoang Mai Profile
2015-04-28 14:46 [p.13133]
Mr. Speaker, this is another troubling TSB report on the government's failure on air safety. The report is clear that the current approach to oversight is at risk of failing to address unsafe practices and conditions, and that if Transport Canada does not adopt a balanced approach that combines inspections with audits the risk of accidents may increase.
When will the minister stop cutting transport safety and start ensuring the safety of Canadians?
View Lisa Raitt Profile
CPC (ON)
View Lisa Raitt Profile
2015-04-28 14:46 [p.13133]
Mr. Speaker, as I previously mentioned in the answer before, in 2002 the department created a civil aviation action plan in order to respond to the critique of the report of the Auditor General that spring.
We are monitoring the carrying out and implementation of this action plan. There is also parliamentary committee oversight. As I stated already, we will use every tool we have to ensure that Transport Canada is fulfilling its mandate with respect to oversight of civil aviation.
View Pierre Lemieux Profile
CPC (ON)
Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise in the House today to support this motion, which, in my opinion, fits in well with our government's commitment and priority to promote economic development and job creation across Canada in a fiscally responsible manner.
The motion also fits in with our government's risk-based approach to air security, whereby funding is targeted to areas of highest risk.
I greatly appreciate having the opportunity to speak about the work that the government is already doing on this issue and what we intend to do in the future to help support the initiatives of these airports.
Let me say at the outset that job creation and ensuring strong economic growth are this government's top priority. We firmly believe that the air industry still represents the fundamental pillar of our economic success.
Indeed, that industry provides goods, services and opportunities for Canadians all across the country, from the largest urban centres to the smallest communities. It contributes to our quality of life, our economy and our relationships with others and with the rest of the world.
Canada's vast geographic size has given rise to one of the largest civilian air transport networks in the world, with over 200 airports operating commercial flights.
Aviation helps distribute Canadian goods and helps us to develop new markets for our industries. It also allows people from outside to discover the beauty of this great land of ours. One hundred million passengers benefit from commercial services in this country on an annual basis. Aviation is truly an economic enabler for Canada. It is very understandable, therefore, that smaller airports are exploring ways of maximizing the economic benefits they get from being part of our aviation network.
Our national civil aviation security program is also one of the strongest in the world and we are committed to maintaining a high level of safety and security for the travelling public.
Of the 200 commercial airports in Canada, 89 are regulated and therefore required to offer mandatory passenger and baggage screening services. These 89 airports deal with approximately 99% of all air passengers in Canada.
The list of regulated airports required to offer mandatory screening services was developed in 2002 in the wake of the September 11 attacks and shows the airports where screening was already carried out before the establishment of the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority. From the point of view of risk-based security, it is not necessary that CATSA, the authority responsible for monitoring transportation security in Canada, ensure a mandatory presence in Canada’s 200 airports; otherwise, the cost of ensuring its presence would be prohibitive.
As we know, CATSA is the only body authorized to carry out security screening at Canadian airports. While CATSA contracts with service providers to carry out this function, it is CATSA that ensures a consistent screening process from coast to coast through the training, certification and oversight of all screening personnel. This is why we ask that the proposed motion be amended, so it is clear that only CATSA is authorized to provide screening services.
Many smaller airports believe that the sole obstacle to establishing new commercial services out their airports is the absence of passenger screening. If these routes are economically viable for the air carriers, then they may in fact be right as Canada's major airports require that passengers be screened before they can transfer to other flights within their airports. Passengers departing from the smaller airports must, therefore, be screened at the larger airports before they can continue their trips.
We strongly believe that security is and should remain the key consideration when allocating government-funded resources to prevent or mitigate threats to the transportation system. Nevertheless, we also believe our aviation security system must support, rather than hinder, economic opportunities.
We are constantly striving to achieve our security objectives, while supporting competitiveness in the aviation sector and minimizing the impact of this support on Canadian taxpayers and on the allocation of scarce security resources. This is why the changes made to the list of airports designated to receive government-funded security screening services are founded on risk-based principles.
Our understanding is that none of the airports interested in receiving screening services currently meet the risk threshold that would warrant mandatory screening. Nonetheless, we believe it is important that the smaller airports have the opportunity to explore all avenues for economic growth, including those that may come with the establishment of new commercial routes.
As we have heard, last June the Minister of Transport sent a letter to the airports that had expressed an interest in obtaining screening services to inform them that departmental officials would be exploring and assessing various mechanisms that would allow them to obtain these services on a cost-recovery basis. Since then, Transport Canada officials have been in contact with the interested airports to confirm their willingness to proceed down this path and to gather additional information on their anticipated commercial operations. Several airports have confirmed their desire to move forward.
Transport Canada has also begun to receive projections and plans that will help determine the level of service and equipment these airports would require. The department is continuing to work with both the interested airports and CATSA to assess the cost of having security screening at these airports. Much of this will depend on the number of flights they expect to attract, as well as other factors, such as passenger load and the frequency and destinations of flights.
Transport Canada will work closely with each individual airport so that screening costs and requirements are clearly understood and to ensure that the potential advantages of establishing screening services exceed the cost of those services.
Despite the progress that has been made, there are a variety of legal and financial challenges relating to this initiative that need to be addressed.
We are currently reviewing the legislative and regulatory changes that would best support this initiative. All parties recognize that these changes would take a certain amount of time. Beyond this, we also want to ensure that any solution takes a long-term view of how CATSA operates so that it is able to respond to this and other industry needs as they arise in the future.
Transport Canada will be working closely with our industry partners to make available all the necessary tools to provide a safe, secure and efficient transportation system to all Canadians.
View Kevin Lamoureux Profile
Lib. (MB)
View Kevin Lamoureux Profile
2015-04-23 17:26 [p.12970]
Mr. Speaker, it is with pleasure that I rise to speak to what I believe is an important motion. When we take a look at all regions of our country, there is a desire from communities, both large and small, as to how they can best develop their communities.
From the previous speaker, we heard a lot about the economics. I, too, would like to contribute to the economic side of things with respect to airports but, also, at the very beginning, to make some brief comments with respect to the importance of passengers, the social component to an airport and the difference that it makes.
There are many communities that have a desire to, ultimately, provide passenger travel through the air. Many of these communities are relatively small but still feel that they have the opportunity to grow into the future. By enabling an expansion of some of these smaller airports, the hope is that their airport will grow and, ultimately, be able to provide a better service to the constituents of that catchment area, if I can put if that way. Whether it is smaller communities scattered throughout the country or larger municipalities, airports really do matter; they matter a great deal to our communities. I like to think that governments, at all different levels, whether federal, municipal, or provincial, recognize the true value of an airport facility, and it does go beyond the economics.
Having said that, I do want to spend some time talking about the security issue and then go on to the economics.
We all, especially inside this chamber, travel a great deal. We have had the good fortune of being able to travel, for the most part, by air, which means that we will go through the CATSA and the screening that passengers are obligated to. It does not matter who one is, one is obligated to go through a screening process. That is just the reality of today's world. I suspect, as we move forward, there will be new technologies brought on. This is where Transport Canada and organizations like CATSA play a very important role because the security factor is ever so important when we talk about airport development. It does not take much to cause a disruption, and a disruption can have a very long, permanent impact upon a community, let alone upon the aviation industry as a whole.
It is important that we can keep up on the technology that is being used out there. People will try to bring things they should not be bringing across the security lines. I am sure many of us have seen ample examples of things that have been pulled out of luggage; for example, a sharp object, a questionable product or even some product of an illegal nature. It is an absolute necessity that we have this process in place in order to protect the long-term and short-term integrity of our airports.
As many members will know, I have had the good fortune of being a parliamentarian for a number of years. I will focus some attention on my own province of Manitoba and the time of Premier Gary Filmon. I can recall during the 1990s they came up with the Winport plan, which was to try to take Winnipeg's geographical location, being the centre of North America, and use it as a port where we could use our airport as a way to facilitate economic growth.
I must say that the hype was considerable back then. The idea was wonderful. Imagine. We are talking about back in the 1990s of being able to bring fresh pork in from our rural communities and load it onto a 747 and then fly it over to Asia as a potential market for fresh, unfrozen pork. It was an idea being talked about because of an experience that was taking place in Atlantic Canada with live lobster.
These are the types of things that generate a great deal of enthusiasm in our communities, when we start talking about potential. Winport did not quite get off the ground, but a number of years later, the concept behind CentrePort was developed. That has gotten off the ground. It is located at the Winnipeg international airport. There is a sense that our airport is going to be a driving force in the future growth not only of the city of Winnipeg but also of the province.
I say that with a great sense of pride. We have developed a new airport. The old terminal that was built a number of decades ago has been replaced with a modern terminal, with departures on the upper level and arrivals on the lower level. The expectation is that we are going to have a growing market as a direct result of the modernization of our airport facility and also on the premises in terms of new hotels that have been developed. Even in the immediate area, we have seen growth in the industrial area. We have seen Canada Way being brought through CentrePort. The potential is truly amazing.
I am very proud of what is taking place in the city of Winnipeg today, and it is being driven by the community. What government can do is enable and support, and the way it can add that support is through infrastructure spending. I will reserve my criticism of the government on that file for now, but there are things the government can do. It is most important that the driving force come from within the community, and we have seen that.
When we take a look at the benefits to the city of Winnipeg, one can understand why communities like Brandon, Portage la Prairie and others, even some communities that are thinking about it that might not have thought about it in the past, are thinking about how they could bring in, in some cases, an airport or expand what they currently have.
There are 200-plus airports scattered across Canada of all different sizes, from the small community airports to Toronto international airport and everything in between. No matter where we go in Canada, we will find that there is a big push to move an airport forward, no matter its size. Even the Toronto international airport is looking at ways to enhance the community by developing the airport.
Whether it is in that community, whether it is in Thompson or Winnipeg, Manitoba, or whether it is any other airport, no matter what coast they might be in close proximity to, that is the reality. A major part of that reality is dealing with the issue of security and the important roles Transport Canada and organizations like CATSA have to play in that, in keeping up on technology and recognizing that there are many airports hoping to be able to tap into that technology to advance their cause, if I could put it that way.
If they can tap into that, and it is a fairly expensive matter, it does allow that facility the opportunity to go in a direction that would be of great benefit to the community in which the facility is actually located.
View Djaouida Sellah Profile
NDP (QC)
Mr. Speaker, it is with conviction and determination to move forward with the matter of security in non-designated airports that I rise to speak today. This motion is designed to provide a solution for the many airports that currently wish to obtain CATSA security checks. The proposed mechanism would be useful for all airports in Canada that are not designated.
I would like to draw the attention of the House to a few figures. In 2004, only two airports received authorization. Since 2004, about 10 airports have had their application for designation denied by Transport Canada. The refusals were not even explained. The government decides to refuse to add airports, without even saying why. Like all the decisions this government makes, these refusals make no sense and once again reflect the incompetence of its administration.
It is nevertheless possible for everyone to understand the opportunity that designated airports represent for our communities. Airports are important economic vectors for our communities. We have the responsibility to support them.
At a time when economic growth is slowing and vulnerability is on the rise, the driving force of an airport leads to direct job creation and stimulates trade and tourism. The economic spinoffs for local businesses and enterprises are sure to be beneficial.
We are well aware that the Conservatives have neglected the development of our communities, and scarcely care about our enterprises. Look at the 2015 budget. Since 2006, the Conservative government has cut taxes on big corporations by over 25%, reducing their tax rate from 22% to 15%. Meanwhile, the government reduced taxes on small business from 11% to 9%, at a rate of 0.5% a year, but only as of 2016. In addition to not caring about small business, the government thumbs its nose at it. The NDP wants practical and effective measures. Promises that will not take effect until 2016 have no place in the 2015 budget.
I do not know what members on the other side do, but I have met with my constituents, spoken to them and listened to them. They have told me that they are no longer getting by. Canadians are tired of the government not listening to them. They want results now.
The Conservatives are out of touch with the daily reality of Canadians. Their only concern is the good health of big corporations and big airports, which obviously contribute more to our economy. Nevertheless, local and regional airports constitute a heritage that is just as important, and they also contribute to the enhancement and development of our regions.
I also learned today that Pascan, a carrier based in Saint-Hubert, will be cutting 240 of its existing 340 jobs. Without government support, regional air transport is no longer cost effective, which leads to layoffs like these. We are witnessing a desertification of our provinces. Travellers will no longer be able to make return journeys between our cities on the same day.
That is an additional problem affecting our communities.
I would like to come back to the issue of the desertification of our regions. My constituents write to me every day to ask for improvements in public transit. There is a real lack of infrastructure, and getting from Saint-Bruno to Saint-Hubert is like an obstacle course for the average citizen. However, what is the Conservative government’s answer to these requests? It comes up with measures that have no real scope, and with provisions that are so complicated that they prevent the funding from reaching the municipalities. Investing in infrastructure is vital for our local economy. If the government does not understand that, it should let us take over.
In conclusion, I will say that the NDP is proud of this motion, and it supports the initiatives by these airports that would make it possible to improve security and support the regional economy, and thus the economy of the whole country.
In the globalized world we live in today, increased personal mobility is indispensable. The need for rapid travel is a real one.
The government cannot restrict people’s freedom of movement and the economic development of airports without offering valid reasons. That is why we will continue to defend the application of this motion so that the Conservative government commits to supporting the regions and we can finally move from words to actions.
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