Tuesday, December 12, 2017

PTB's Greyhound hearing in Terrace this afternoon to receive Northwest contributions

Day Two of the Passenger Transportation Board Hearings into Greyhound
Canada's request to end service in Northern BC takes place today. The Northwest
BC session is set for  the Terrace Best Western Hotel from 1 to 3 PM

(photo from Best Western Hotels website)

The four day blitz of Northern BC by the Passenger Transportation Board makes its stop in Terrace this afternoon, making for the closest location that the transportation oversight agency will get to the Prince Rupert area on its list of hearings on Greyhound transportation in Northern British Columbia.

The Terrace stop offers up the nearest opportunity available for those that wish to weigh in on the request by Greyhound Canada, that would see the transportation provider bring an end to its Highway 16 bus service between Prince Rupert and Prince George.

Today's session is set for the Terrace Best Western Hotel in the Skeena Room from 1 to 3 PM and as we noted on the blog in November, participants were required to register for the hearing if they wished to make an verbal contribution to today's session.

The tour started in Prince George on Monday and as accounts from that session indicate, the hearing process began with Greyhound outlining how they believe that it is  no longer possible for the bus line to make any money on the northern runs, detailing for the PTB how they seen a 46 per cent decline in ridership since 2010.

The quest by Greyhound to end its
northern BC service is the subject of
four days of hearings this week
The bus line has also pointed to government subsidized services as part of the reason for that drop in ridership, with the Northern Health Connections service and recent initiatives from BC transit among their concerns.

Greyhound notes that across the province in the 2016-17 fiscal year they suffered a 12.9 million dollar loss on their passenger service options.

At Monday's session the company proposed a form of  taxpayer funded subsidy program for highway service in Northern BC.

One which would see municipalities and First Nations access funding through the proposed program to seek out competitive bids from private operators, who would look to provide a link to rural communities for the more popular routes.

Though how that program would work and what level of funding that might be required was not outlined in any great detail for the PTB hearing.

One Done, Three to go in Greyhound Public Hearings  (video)
Greyhound proposes subsidized passenger service
Greyhound, PTB hear concerns with stopping Northern Bus routes
Greyhound calls on BC government to help ensure Transportation Access to Remote Communities
Greyhound wants to leave Northern British Columbia and says Government-funded transit should take its place

Skeena Bulkley-Valley MP Nathan Cullen has been following the debate on the Greyhound request and urged Northwest residents to make their voices heard on the issue.

Cullen Urges Northwest residents to attend Greyhound Meetings
Greyhound Canada's Northern BC plans (video)

Following today's session in Terrace, the PTB moves on to Smithers for a Wednesday session, they wrap up their work in Fort St. John on December 14th.

For more items related to the Greyhound request see our Transportation Archive page here.

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