March 28, 2005
Andrew Scheer, Conservative MP Regina-Qu’Appelle, has repeatedly expressed his concerns about the fairness of rents charged by the federal government on the Regina Airport and the cost of air travel. We know it doesn’t affect him, as the taxpayers, his constituents, fund the costs of his flights nearly every week between Regina and Ottawa. We also know that Scheer is able to rack up air miles for every dollar the taxpayers spend flying him around the country. How fair is that?
He and his colleagues on the Transport Committee have called for the elimination of the Air Travelers Security Surcharge. Is security at our airports no longer an issue?
Scheer has also called for the suspension of rental payments by airports for a two-year period with the savings to be passed on to the carriers. That would be somewhat similar to suspending your rent or mortgage on your residence for two years with the savings being passed on to your landlord or bank. Why does Andrew Scheer want to subsidize big business? How many of his constituents take regular flights that are in dire need of a reduction in their flight costs?
Scheer and the Transport Committee have also called for the reduction of the federal aviation fuel tax by a rate of 50% for a two-year period. Now is that Sheer nonsense or is that Scheer nonsense? Does Scheer support the provincial NDP? They introduced a reduction on aviation fuel from 3.5 to 1.5 cents per litre, which is more than 50%, in their 2005 Budget.
Auto fuel costs are out of control. A tax break on these costs would benefit more people in Saskatchewan than a tax break for air carriers. This is, of course, unless you have a Cessna parked on your driveway or a 737 cleared for take off from your back 40.
I am more concerned about the high cost of living for individual people in Saskatchewan communities. Vehicle fuel costs, farm fuel and input costs, property taxes, utility rates, auto insurance, medical costs, the working poor, single parents, students and high tax rates on those who are fortunate enough to finally make a few dollars. Why isn’t Andrew Scheer repeatedly expressing concerns about these issues?