More money needed to BC Ferries under New Building Canada Fund: Cullen

Skeena-Bulkley Valley MP Nathan Cullen is making sure that the organization gets the federal funding it deserves

BC Ferries operates along the marine highways of B.C. coastal communities and Skeena-Bulkley Valley MP Nathan Cullen is making sure that the organization gets the federal funding it deserves.

Having written a letter to Canadian Infrastructure Minister Amarjeet Sohi, Cullen and six other NDP MPs in B.C. notified Minister Sohi that leaving BC Ferries out of the New Building Canada Fund would be a sizable mistake.

“A lot of my colleagues wrote to the minister this just [last] week about allowing infrastructure money to go into making BC Ferries more affordable and stronger for the North Coast and for many of our communities that rely on ferry service, by our reading of the government’s intentions, BC Ferries should be able to [receive some funding], but it’s going to take a little bit of a push,” Cullen noted last week.

In a release Cullen sent out, the MP said that high increases to fares for northern B.C. residents wanting  to use BC Ferries has put a strain on those passengers’ finances. A larger federal boost to BC Ferries by the new Liberal Government of Canada would go a long way in relieving that financial strain that customers have taken on through higher fares.

“BC Ferries has been criticized for passing on dramatic ferry increases to B.C. residents, which has had a devastating impact on many coastal communities,” Cullen and his fellow MPs wrote in the letter.

“The proposed change could make an enormous difference … This kind of funding would reduce cost pressures as BC Ferries renews its fleet and develops terminals and faces other capital costs,” he wrote.

Along with pressuring the government for more funding for BC Ferries, Cullen offered insight into where discussions may be going in regards to the stalled Alaska Marine Highway negotiations between the Canadian government and the U.S. over upgrading the Prince Rupert terminal, which is in disrepair.

“We’re hoping for a reset on that. I’ve spoken very briefly to the new minister who’s just getting caught up and doesn’t really have a lot of depth on the file yet, but I’m hopeful that the conversations that I had with the U.S. ambassador and some of the officials in Alaska, that we can get back to resolving this,” he said.

“There are a few options that are being explored including even moving the terminal to Lax Kw’alaams if we need it to got that far, but I don’t think it does.”

The Alaska Marine Highway System (AMHS) recently announced it has proposed remaining at two sailings per week for next summer out of Prince Rupert.

 

Just Posted

BC Bus North service extended to September

Transportation ministers have extended the service, which was set to expire at the end of May

Nisga’a leader named UNBC chancellor

Dr. Joseph Arthur Gosnell is the first Indigenous leader to assume the role

Northwest local governments team up to fill in future employment gaps

Around 17,000 jobs will need to be filled in the region over the next eight years

Poetry month sees launch of “Oona River Poems” at Rupert library

Peter Christensen consciously and lovingly documents our physical and psychological landscapes

Lily Swanson celebrates her 90th birthday in Prince Rupert

The Acropolis Manor resident has 22 grandchildren and is a great grandmother to 25 children

Prince Rupert students share portraits of kindness with children in Peru

The Memory Project gives teens a chance to sharpen their art skills and global awareness

‘B.C. cannot wait for action’: Top doctor urges province to decriminalize illicit drugs

Dr. Bonnie Henry says current approach in ‘war on drugs’ has criminalized and stigmatized drug users

Canfor curtailing operations across B.C.

Low lumber prices and the high cost of fibre are the cause of curtailment

B.C. woman, 76, challenges alcohol-screening laws after failing to give breath sample

Norma McLeod was unable to provide a sample because of her medical conditions

New report on 2017 wildfires calls for better coordination with B.C. First Nations

Tsilhqot’in National Government documents 2017 disaster and lists 33 calls to action

B.C. youth coach banned amid sexual harassment, bullying scandal: Water Polo Canada

Justin Mitchell can’t take part in Water Polo Canada events or clubs

Wilson-Raybould: Feds want to just ‘manage the problem’ of Indigenous Peoples

Former federal justice minister speaks at First Nations Justice Council meeting in B.C.

Haida youth travels to New York for UN forum on Indigenous issues

Haana Edensaw presented her speech in Xaad Kil, Masset dialect of the Haida language

Female real estate agents warned of suspicious man in Metro Vancouver

The man requests to see homes alone with the female agent, police say

Most Read