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article imageTransport Minister says Greyhound 'bullying' with threatened cuts

By Stephanie Dearing     Sep 4, 2009 in Business
The 95 year old bus company claimed that government regulations are putting the Canadian company in a precarious financial position. Federal Transport Minister John Baird fired back, saying the company was "bullying" the government and consumers.
Canada's Federal Transport Minister John Baird, never one to mince his words, has declared that Greyhound is bullying the governments of Ontario and Manitoba with the "threat" to cut service. He also said that Transport Canada is not responsible for bus service in Canada.
Greyhound announced yesterday that it was ending service to Manitoba in 30 days. Service in northern Ontario will end December 2nd.
The largest North American provider of intercity bus transportation, serving more than 3,700 destinations across the continent announced cuts to its service to Manitoba and northern Ontario yesterday. The announcement caused distress for riders who rely upon the service. The company had also said that it was reviewing service to the rest of western and northern Canada, and it was possible that service would be cut to western provinces and the Northwest Territories and Yellowknife. The company has claimed that decreases in the number of riders on its buses are to blame, as are federal regulations that force the company to "subsidize" routes with few riders.
Greyhound said it requires funding to continue the service, and has asked the federal government for $15 million. The company also wants to be let off the hook in terms of rules that ensure service is provided to smaller communities in remote areas. The federal government has refused the funding. Baird said that Ottawa was concerned about the looming service cuts.
Canadians have been asking for federal investment in national transportation for years. The Canadian Urban Transit Association notes that Canada is the only OECD country that lacks policies to ensure investment in public transportation.
More about Greyhound, John baird, Bus service, Manitoba, Ontario
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