Langley Advance Times introduced a new weekly feature, call it “At Your Service.”
It’s another forum in which to put questions to our local politicians about key issues facing our community and its residents.
Using a basic question-and-answer format, elected officials will be asked one question at a time and given the opportunity to respond (to a maximum of 250 words) on that said issue.
Alternating between elected groups, Langley City and Langley Township councils, Langley school board, Langley MLAs, and Langley MPs each have a chance to participate.
The answers provided will be published in their entirety online each Sunday.
Both Langley MPs were asked the same question: Should Canada have re-opened to American tourists without immediate reciprocity from the U.S.?
MP Tamara Jansen
A. Organizations representing the travel and tourism industry in Canada have been calling on the government to present a clear roadmap for reopening the Canada/U.S. border for nearly a year.
Many tourist destinations in the Lower Mainland and in B.C. depend on visitors from the U.S. As these businesses struggle, their calls to action have fallen on deaf ears.
Recently the President of the Association of Independent Travel Advisors, Judith Coates, said: “It is disappointing the federal government has ignored our pleas for sector-specific funding.” She goes on to say that with current ‘level 3 non-essential’ and ‘Level 4 do not cruise’ travel advisories in place, many in the industry will not make it to the finish line.
We have heard the finance minister say she understands the pandemic has been a bigger challenge for women, who make up the bulk of the travel and tourism industry, and yet we have seen little in the way of solutions.
The fact that now we find our neighbours and allies to the south are not on the same page as our prime minister should not come as a surprise. It is yet another example of how poorly the Liberals have managed to negotiate with successive presidents.
Whether it’s soft wood lumber tariffs, free trade agreements or opening the borders, Canadians have not been served well by this current government.
MP Tako van Popta
A. Prior to the government announcement regarding the border re-opening, Conservatives, business groups, and Canadians had been calling for the Trudeau Liberals to put forward metrics for a safe border re-opening.
It remains unclear what those metrics are and why they could not be shared with the business community.
I look forward to the economic recovery of Langley’s travel industry, and the small businesses that keep our local economy moving in the right direction.
Next week’s Langley City councillors are being asked: With dry summers increasingly common, how important are natural features like trees, parks, and streams to keeping Langley City cooler? .
Watch for their answers online Sunday.