Plane tickets at $500: why did you not choose to finance TREQ?

Minister Bonnardel clarified on Monday who will be entitled to the $500 tickets from the 1er June. Everyone will be entitled to these tickets: Quebecers, Canadians and tourists.

For the citizen and former mayor of Sept-Îles Réjean Porlier, who has been involved in the aviation file for a long time, he wonders about the very nature of the program.

This program will cost Quebeckers a fortune, when an alternative was proposed, which was the cooperative Quebec regional transport cooperative. »

A quote from Réjean Porlier, citizen and former mayor of Sept-Îles
Réjean Porlier during an interview with Radio-Canada.

The former mayor of Sept-Îles, Réjean Porlier (archives).

Photo: Radio Canada

To improve the aviation service in the region, he considers that the solution lies in larger planes, with more seats, as well as greater competition on the market.

When we launched the idea of ​​the Cooperative Quebec regional transport cooperative, we were under $500. No one had understood why we had packed the Quebec regional transport cooperative out of hand, when in the end, having lower prices is what we are looking foradds Mr. Porlier.

The Coopérative de transport régional du Québec (TREQ) wishes to make interregional air transport in Quebec more accessible by offering flights at a lower cost. She wants to offer all her tickets under the $500 mark.

Last week, the president of the board of directors of the cooperative Quebec regional transport cooperativeÉric Larouche, had a mixed reception to Quebec’s $260 million aid plan.

The citizen group Solidarité Gaspésie would also have preferred that the government invest in the cooperative Quebec regional transport cooperative.

Last February, the Minister of Economy and Innovation, Pierre Fitzgibbon, qualified the business model developed by Quebec regional transport cooperativewhich he considers imprecise.

Close-up of Economy Minister Pierre Fitzgibbon.

According to the Minister of Economy and Innovation, Pierre Fitzgibbon, “several things do not hold water in the TREQ proposal” (archives).

Photo: Radio-Canada / Sylvain Roy Roussel

Despite everything, the members of Solidarité Gaspésie are asking Minister Fitzgibbon to reconsider his decision not to fund Quebec regional transport cooperative.

The airline cooperative Quebec regional transport cooperative asked Quebec for a loan of $4 million.

The Solidarité Gaspésie group compares this amount requested by Quebec regional transport cooperative to the $260 million that François Bonnardel intends to invest in the ticket program.

Four million out of $260 million, you see, that’s very little. It questions us a lot. »

A quote from Carol Saucier, spokesperson for Solidarité Gaspésie

According to Mr. Saucier, the realization of the project Quebec regional transport cooperative promote competition and reduce ticket prices without government intervention.

Solidarité Gaspésie also suggests that the Minister create a follow-up committee on the reduced price ticket program in order to measure its impact and be able to improve it if necessary.

The PQ is also disappointed

The Parti Québécois asks Transport Minister François Bonnardel to take stock.

Tuesday morning at the National Assembly, the deputy of the Îles-de-la-Madeleine, Joël Arseneau, deplored that this program seems to be set up more for tourists than for residents in the region.

Joel Arseneau.

Joël Arseneau, MP for the Îles-de-la-Madeleine, at the National Assembly (archives).

Photo: Radio-Canada / Daniel Coulombe

He compared Minister Bonnardel’s regional air transport development plan to the third link project in Quebec.

It is the method of the third link in Quebec applied to air transport where we begin to backpedal. I guess we’ll expect a new plansays Mr. Arseneau.

With information from Zoé Bellehumeur, Joane Bérubé and Isabelle Lévesque

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