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2006 Federal election checklist

By Kevin Psutka

 

The federal election provides a tremendous opportunity for COPA members to get their views and concerns about aviation out to politicians across the country. We sent a list of top issues (see below) to the federal party leaders along with a request for their position and the results will be on our website prior to the election in order to help you decide on which party best supports our sector of aviation.

We have prepared the following election checklist to help you determine the level of knowledge and support that your local candidates have for personal aviation.

  • Determine the issues that are of greatest concern to your freedom to fly.
  • Describe to the politician how the issues affect your use of aircraft for personal travel and recreation. Personal concerns of a local nature add a human dimension to the issues.
  • Ask the candidate to give specific commitments on your concerns. Keep track of the responses so that you can hold them accountable after they are elected.

Aviation is under increasing pressure, in large part due to a lack of policy at the federal level. Over the past 10 years, federally-owned airports have been divested as has the national air navigation system.
It is now more important than ever to engage your representatives in the job of protecting our sector of aviation, for your freedom to fly!

TOP ISSUES

National Airports Policy

The government decided more than 10 years ago to divest itself of airports, retaining ownership in only a few large airports. The policy has left many smaller airports, which play a vital role in transportation and the economy, struggling financially to survive. There has consequently been a loss of national focus on the importance of a viable network of airports.

What is your position on the need for a review of this policy?

Fuel Excise Tax

This tax is collected on all types of aviation fuel and it removes millions of dollars annually from aviation. The government decided recently to use some of the revenue, including that collected from aviation, to help fix roads in Canada, illustrating that indeed the concept of applying taxes from one sector back to that sector is a viable option.

Would you support an effort to apply the excise tax on aviation fuel to aviation purposes?

Increasing Transport Canada’s Budget

General Aviation is the fastest growing segment of aviation in Canada, yet continuing cuts to Transport Canada's budget are resulting in the reduction or elimination of essential safety programs and services.

Are you in favour of increasing Transport Canada's budget specifically to support the restoration of these programs and services, and to keep pace with General Aviation's growth?