Cullen disappointed in PTB decision on Greyhound, calls for fed support

PRINCE RUPERT- Nathan Cullen (Skeena- Bulkley Valley) is extremely disappointed in the decision today by the Passenger Transportation Board (PTB) allowing Greyhound to cancel all its northern routes.  Cullen will be asking first nation, municipal and regional governments to support him in calling on the federal government to work with northern communities and set up a regional bus service.

“This decision will have serious impacts to northern communities that rely on the service for work, business and safely getting around Northern BC,” said Cullen.

The routes cancelled represent the entire Northern half of BC including the Highway of Tears and will make it harder for people in the North to get to major centres such as Prince George. The application was filed earlier in 2017 asking for permission to pull out service from the north due to increased public transit and ride sharing.

The decision comes on the heels of public consultation around the affected routes and meeting with all levels of government and stakeholders on Greyhound’s application to the PTB. In their ruling the PTB said they cannot compel a private company to continue operations at a loss. Greyhound said it has lost $70 million in the past 6 years a loss of about $35,000 a day in BC. The northern routes were identified as the biggest contributors to the loss and that by cancelling those runs they would be able to better serve the interior and south of BC.

“Transportation is incredibly important for the viability and safety of our communities,” said Cullen. ”The BC public transit system was introduced last year to address affordability among smaller communities in the northwest but was not meant to replace the important service Greyhound provides to people and is meant for smaller segments but not for the intercity travel and we will continue to fight for those services.”

The PTB decision says Greyhound must continue operations until May 2018 to provide transportation through the harsh winter months and that any company that wishes to replace the Greyhound service can apply to the board.

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Contact: Joshua McLeod, 250-622-2413, nathan.cullen.c2@parl.gc.ca