Standing Committee on Transport, Infrastructure and Communities (TRAN)
Date: Thursday, February 18, 2021
Time: 3:30PM – 5:30-PM (Minister Alghabra only available for the 1st hour)
Location: Webcast through Zoom (televised meeting)
Subject: Impact of COVID-19 on the air sector and Minister of Transport Supplementary Mandate Letter
- Hon. Omar Alghabra, P.C., M.P., Minister of Transport
- Michael Keenan, Deputy Minister
- Kevin Brosseau, Assistant Deputy Minister, Safety and Security
- Lawrence Hanson, Assistant Deputy Minister, Policy
- Anuradha Marisetti, Assistant Deputy Minister, Programs
Opening Remarks: Minister to deliver remarks (5 mins)
Question of witnesses:
For the first round of questioning, six (6) minutes (for both question and answer) to a representative of each party in the following order (24 mins):
- Conservative Party
- Liberal Party
- Bloc Québecois
- New Democratic Party
For the second and subsequent rounds, time allocation is as follows (25 mins):
- Conservative (5 mins);
- Liberal (5 mins);
- Bloc Québecois (2.5 mins);
- New Democratic Party (2.5 mins);
- Conservative (5 mins);
- Liberal (5 mins).
The Committee reconvened on October 13, 2020 following the opening of the 2nd Session of the 43rd Parliament. Committee membership is aligned with the distribution of seats in the House of Commons (6 Liberals, 4 Conservatives, 1 Bloc, 1 NDP). MP Vance Badawey (Liberal) is the Chair. MP Stephanie Kusie (Conservative) is the first Vice-Chair and MP Barsalou-Duval (Bloc Québécois) is the second Vice-Chair.
The Committee can study any aspect of the management and operations of Transport Canada and Infrastructure Canada, as well as any legislation, programs or policy areas administered by the Minister of Transport and the Minister of Infrastructure.
TC-related motions before the Committee adopted during the second session of the 43rd Parliament include:
- That the committee invite the Transport Minister to appear for two hours, with the first hour focussed on the Supplemental Mandate Letter and the second hour on the pre-entry testing requirements, and that this meeting occur as soon as possible but no later than 12 March 2021.
- That the committee hold a minimum of one meeting to hear witness testimony from Transport Canada officials regarding approval of the 737 MAX aircraft return to service, and that these meetings occur no later than 18 February 2021.
- That the committee invite the Minister of Transport and the Minister of Infrastructure and Communities, to appear, at their earliest convenience, in relation to the study of the Main Estimates 2020-21, the Departmental Plans 2020-21 and the Supplementary Estimates (B).
- That, pursuant to Standing Order 108(2), the Committee undertake a study on Transport Canada’s aircraft certification process, including, but not limited to, the nature of Transport Canada’s relationship to the Federal Aviation Administration and other certifying bodies, as well as the role of airplane manufacturers in the certification process; that no fewer than two meetings be set aside for this study; and that the evidence and documentation received by the committee during the first session of the 43rd Parliament on the subject be taken into consideration by the committee in the current session.
- That, pursuant to Standing Order 108(2), the Committee undertake a broad study on the impact of COVID-19 on the aviation sector; and that no fewer than eight meetings be set aside for this study, and that the impact of the Air Transat sale on the sector be the first item considered as part of the study.
- That, an order of the Committee be issued for the production of Transport Canada’s reports, documents, memoranda, notes and other records relating to the sale of Air Transat and that they be delivered to the Clerk of the Committee within 30 days following the adoption of this motion.
Active Studies at Dissolution
Due to the pandemic, after three meetings the study on Aircraft Certification Process was interrupted by dissolution. In the new session a motion was adopted to set aside not more than two meetings for this study; and that the evidence and documentation received by the committee during the first session of the 43rd Parliament on the subject be taken into consideration by the committee in the current session.
Committee activity within the last year
From February 2020 to June 2020, the Committee held three meetings on Aircraft Certification Process, one meeting on the Mandate of the Minister of Transport and one meeting on the Ministers' Spending Priorities.
Since the start of the Second Session of the 43rd Parliament, the Committee has been very busy resuming and concluding the study on the aircraft certification process. The Committee is currently considering a draft report. It's expected that a Government Response will be requested.
Additionally, the Committee has so far held eight meetings on the impact of COVID-19 on the aviation sector. TC officials have appeared in December. The Feb 18 meeting is expected to wrap up this study. A final report and Government Response request are expected.
The Committee has voiced interest in re-adopting the Bus Safety Report tabled in June 2019. If re-adopted and re-tabled in Parliament, a Government Response could be requested.