The federal Conservative party is pushing for supports for local restaurants, tourism-based industries and more in the next federal budget, amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.

Kenora MP Eric Melillo explains the reasoning behind their sector-specific supports motion, introduced at the House of Commons earlier this week.

“We definitely have [taken a hit]. We know that all too well in this region,” explained Melillo, during a virtual interview. “For those key sectors that have been especially impacted by COVID-19, we’re calling for more specific support in the next federal budget. I’m happy that the motion has passed.”

Melillo, who also serves as the Shadow Minister of Northern Development and FedNor, notes the motion aims to support those in the tourism, hospitality and airline industries, as well as registered charities.

“Unfortunately, the Liberals voted against it. But now, in the Government of course, they’ll be tasked with developing that support. We hope that they’ll follow that motion to have more robust sector-specific supports.”

Supports could include making airlines commit to providing consumer refunds, restrict executive pay and restore regional routes. The New Democrats are also pushing for supports for small businesses ahead of the next federal budget, expected sometime this spring.

This will be the first federal budget since 2019 after COVID-19 delayed Ottawa last year. Leadership transitioned into producing a series of economic updates in its place. The Liberals have yet to provide an expected date for the 2021 budget.

For more information:
Melillo: Vaccine rollout still a disappointment