Northern B.C. leaders secure meeting with Greyhound

The hope is to work with Greyhound and find options to stay in the north

Mayors are rallying to keep Greyhound from departing Northwest B.C., and now plan to meet with the company to help find a solution.

Greyhound applied to withdraw its service from nine B.C. routes, including its northern routes connecting Prince George, Prince Rupert, Dawson Creek and Fort St. James.

Greyhound cited losses of more than $10 million annually to justify the pullout, but northern B.C. leaders contend that it’s an essential service for rural, northern communities and can’t be measured by profit alone.

At the Union of B.C. Municipalities convention in Vancouver between mayors and regional district leaders from the north met with Minister of Transportation Claire Trevena on Thursday Sept. 28 to discuss the Greyhound’s services in the north.

Though the decision lies with the B.C. Passenger Transportation Board on whether to allow Greyhound to withdraw. Minister Trevena took the first step to facilitate a meeting between northern leaders and Greyhound to discuss possible solutions to the problems the company is facing with the affected routes, and “facilitate some answers or options and not see this service lost to the north,” said Dawson Creek Mayor Dale Bumstead.

Municipalities, regional districts and members of the public are all being encouraged to send feedback to them as the governing body. Public comment is open till Oct 13.

Vanderhoof Mayor and Council are among the municipalities who have put their name on a Prince George letter of input, supporting a resolution from the City that the passenger transportation board consider the needs of the communities in the northwest, in the rural communities.

The B.C. Transportation Board has already begun weighing out Greyhound’s request, with aims to decide about the move within 90 days. However, that deadline is flexible based on the complexity of the decision and amount of feedback received.

To provide input on the board’s decision, go to www.ptboard.bc.ca, phone: 250-953-3777 or email ptboard@gov.bc.ca