Thursday, September 3, 2009

Greyhound demands $15M to avoid route cuts

Can you say "extortion"?

Greyhound Canada said Thursday that unless it gets $15 million in government aid, it will cease bus operations in Manitoba and northwestern Ontario because it is being forced to operate unprofitable rural routes with a lack of government help.

The company, a subsidiary of Dallas-based Greyhound Lines Inc., also said it is reviewing its operations in Alberta, Saskatchewan, British Columbia, the Yukon and the Northwest Territories.

Despite Greyhound's insistence that it is in "dire" financial straits, federal and provincial politicians called the announcement a ploy.

Service in Manitoba will end Oct. 2 and routes in northwestern Ontario will stop operating Dec. 2, Greyhound said in a statement.

Stuart Kendrick, senior vice-president of Greyhound Canada, said government is to blame for the company's financial situation.

Kendrick said current rules force Greyhound to run trips to unprofitable sites in small-town Canada, which can no longer be supported through money-making routes and bus parcel operations, or through other revenue sources.

Source. Maybe we should spend some money, but use it to set up our own publicly owned bus line...

Edited to add: is Jim Maloway reading this blog?

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