Federal gov't announces $2.8M for air services in remote Nunavut communities

·1 min read
Terry Beech, the federal parliamentary secretary to the deputy prime minister and minister of finance, and Jimi Onalik, the deputy minister for Nunavut's Department of Executive and Intergovernmental Affairs, laugh during a press conference in Iqaluit. (Sarah Krymalowski/CBC - image credit)
Terry Beech, the federal parliamentary secretary to the deputy prime minister and minister of finance, and Jimi Onalik, the deputy minister for Nunavut's Department of Executive and Intergovernmental Affairs, laugh during a press conference in Iqaluit. (Sarah Krymalowski/CBC - image credit)

The federal government has pledged $2.8 million to support essential air services for remote communities in Nunavut.

Jimi Onalik, the deputy minister for Nunavut's Department of Executive and Intergovernmental Affairs, called the funding "good news" and an example of strong co-operation between the territorial and federal governments.

He spoke during a press conference Friday at the Iqaluit airport.

"This money will be used to make sure that communities that require more than one flight per week are able to access that level of service, because we continue to need people to move to and from communities," Onalik said.

Terry Beech, the federal parliamentary secretary to the deputy prime minister and minister of finance, announced the new funding at the airport on behalf of Transport Minister Omar Alghabra.

"Maintaining remote air services isn't easy, and the territories are no exception to these challenges," Beech said.

Beech noted funding for air services in Nunavut has helped food, medical supplies and first responders get to remote communities.

"These funds help strengthen essential transportation supply chains for the northern, remote communities that rely on them," Beech said.

The funding comes from Transport Canada's Remote Air Services Program, which allocates a fixed amount of funding to provinces and territories with remote communities to ensure they receive essential levels of air service.

Provinces and territories are responsible for distributing the funding to air carriers.

Under the program, 25 communities with airports in Nunavut are considered remote.

The program provided more than $30.6 million to the Nunavut government in 2020 and 2021.