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Northern jobs, tourist dollars don't matter to Conservatives: Hughes

Monday, February 03, 2014   by: Staff


OTTAWA - Every year tourists spend billions of dollars in Northern Ontario supporting thousands of jobs, but that doesn’t seem to matter much to the Conservative government according to New Democrat MP, Carol Hughes.

Hughes delivered a statement in the House of Commons questioning the Conservatives commitment to small businesses in the region and illustrated that with two avoidable examples.

“Last year a showdown with the province threatened to cancel the season for the Chi Cheemaun Ferry and Manitoulin Island tourism,” said Hughes.  “This year they’re blaming CN after killing a subsidy that offset some of the losses from the Algoma Central Railway’s passenger service from Hearst to Sault Ste. Marie . “

Hughes finds it incredible that the Conservatives are willing to end the service just a few years after paying to refurbish the passenger cars.  

She also feels the government does not appreciate the reality of the businesses that are most affected by their decisions.

“Most tourist operations in Northern Ontario are small and family-run.  They work especially hard and do not deserve last minute roadblocks from the Conservatives,” said Hughes.

“Just as they are drumming up business for the summer they are forced to wonder if they’ll have a season at all.”

Hughes is calling on the government sit down with stakeholders to find a way to ensure a long healthy future for the ACR’s passenger service and the communities, including the town of Oba, businesses, and people who rely on it.


Note: Comments that appear on the site are not the opinion of If you see an abusive post, please click the link beside the post to report it.
fullstringer 2/3/2014 9:06:30 PM Report

While I sympathize with the stakeholders involved and effected with the passenger rail service being shut down, I have to just shake my head at Hughes.

"Hughes is calling on the government sit down with stakeholders to find a way to ensure a long healthy future for the ACR’s passenger service and the communities, including the town of Oba, businesses, and people who rely on it."

The town of "Oba"? Does this idiot Hughes and her supporters not realize that Oba is not a town? If she wants to stand up and fight alongside the people who directly affected, then maybe she should study up on the issue and learn who and what will be affected with this? Duhhh......
Beej 2/3/2014 10:06:42 PM Report

ACR has no passenger service, or a railway for that matter.
I'm In 2/3/2014 10:23:07 PM Report

The "know it all" keyboard commandos are alive and well on this site, very comical.
Dead End Kid 2/3/2014 10:27:52 PM Report

Fullstringer she may be misinformed but her heart is in the right place.

You would rarely call someone an idiot to their face so why do you choose do it in anonymity?
BarbG 2/3/2014 11:18:01 PM Report

correction they refurbished the tour train cars not the passenger
Sam The Dog 2/4/2014 6:54:36 AM Report

Wake Up Carol. It's the passenger train being cut, which is used mostly by locals, not tourists or local businesses (ie; lodges) trying to bring in non-local money. There is no cancellation of the Tour Train. Carol put Brain in gear first before releasing clutch to operate mouth.
Right Winger 2/4/2014 7:23:41 AM Report

I am very curious to know what the return on investment was on the government subsidy that CN received.

I am guessing the only ones that benefitted were CN by losing less money. Lodges who profited by having the government, CN and its patrons pay to get to their businesses. Private camp owners who own places where they pay next to nothing in property tax. A few local stores where some tourists bought supplies. The Beer Store where Americans would buy there beer after they had bought all they were allowed at the US duty free store, and the Canadian Duty free store.

Companies like Air Dale do not get a subsidy thus their customers pay to be flown into their places. Companies like that are at a disadvantage to those being backed by the government.
Right Winger 2/4/2014 7:26:10 AM Report

And one other thing Carol, their are not billions being poured into the businesses that line this piece of track. The feds give a lot of money to tourist attractions already. Most of which are not for profit entities such as The Bushplane Centre, Science North, Ermatinger Stone House. So clearly they do care about tourists.
dadal 2/4/2014 8:27:45 AM Report

Yes she did get it wrong but I agree her heart IS in the right place. Passenger service is still in the older "crappy" cars while the Tour train was refurbished. Except the Dome car which CN won't fix. Yet there were two ACR Dome cars sitting on the Soo MI side since last fall. I thought POSSIBLY they were going to make the effort to put the Dome car back in, which was always a higher price to be in and desired by many tourists. Nope, not done. A friend of mine that works for CN said they are fixing those up to be used for ANOTHER rail line in the USA, not ours. Addressing the point on the Chi Chi Ferry, ridership dropped after the accidents a few years ago. Then the cost of fuel skyrocketed sending ticket prices up. I understand the last 3 years that ridership on the ferry has gone WAY up just as out Agawa train did. But typical of Conservatives, they want to support overseas countries and corporations run by friends. Plus these are in the North where they just don't care about.
B Boy 2/4/2014 8:29:28 AM Report

Just more political grandstanding.

What were these parties doing over all the previous years to ensure the longevity of services?

Meanwhile they all, in turn, feign outrage & concern when the opposing party makes an unpopular change.

Bill_the_Cat 2/4/2014 9:19:28 AM Report

'Her heart is in the right place' Really?

Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.

Martin Luther King, Jr.
Bill_the_Cat 2/4/2014 9:20:22 AM Report

Never throw good money after bad. If rail is unsustainable, let it die.
Lone24 2/4/2014 9:55:01 AM Report

The Canadian government is sounding more like the Americans. Cut this cut that who cares about the small guy. Give more to the richer people that's all that matters to them.
learningaswego 2/4/2014 10:50:40 AM Report

Yah, those darn Conservatives are well-known for not liking people to have jobs, eh?

More brilliance from the NDP! And the Dipper voters swoon in awe of their brilliance.
learningaswego 2/4/2014 11:00:00 AM Report

Relax people, it's just another Dipper politician trying to appear relevant.

They have to come out with a big important "news release" once in a while - criticizing the government, so their Dipper fan club doesn't forget them. You know the story - whatever the government says or does, the Dipper politician is "against it".
Is there an easier or better "job" in the world, than being a Dipper politician?
eadiecougs 2/4/2014 11:48:04 AM Report

Hey there are trucks that ride the rail get a bunch of them and you can drive up there
thera 2/4/2014 1:54:16 PM Report

At least we are hearing from somebody. Where is Hayes on these issues??
Right Winger 2/4/2014 3:20:04 PM Report

He had a news release last week. What is there to say. Where is the private company with billions in revenues taking money from taxpayers is a better question.
dutch touch 2/4/2014 3:29:44 PM Report

If these politicians would stop worrying about n.d.p this conservatives this liberal that and just worry about the people in their ridding and province , we would get more results.

Don't worry about who's party is better just work for the people.
We will know who is working and who is failing in the government. We ( the people )are pretty smart sometimes and we really don't need you Carol or any other official to tell us.
Note: Comments that appear on the site are not the opinion of If you see an abusive post, please click the link beside the post to report it.
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