OTTAWA, Ont. — The Canadian Trucking Alliance (CTA) was on Parliament Hill again this week to offer on its insight on Paul Martin’s anticipated December federal budget.
Appearing before the parliamentary standing committee on finance as part of the government’s consultations, David Bradley, the group’s chief executive officer, testified the first question the Alliance had to ask itself was whether its submission in August was still relevant.
The late-summer presentation touched on highway infrastructure investment, reformulating the federal excise tax on diesel fuel, accelerating capital consumption allowances and improving the tax treatment of driver meal deductions.
“At the time we were not even sure when the next budget would be and no one could foresee the horrific events of September 11th. There is definitely a new reality,” says Bradley.
He added that the continuing state of high alert at the border between Canada and the U.S. has created a “fragile situation” for wait times at the border. And, that truck lines are still subject to sporadic disruption, even though the time it takes to clear the border has, in recent weeks, returned to a state of normality.
Moreover, Bradley indicated that, “overall, the amount of trans-border truck shipments are down on average by about 10 per cent at the major crossings since September 11th, which is perhaps not as bad as first feared (although) clearly some sectors have been impacted more than others.”
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