Madam Chair and members of the committee, thank you for inviting us here today to discuss Transport Canada's supplementary estimates (B) for 2017-18.
Transport Canada's focus for the coming year remains the safety and security of our transportation system. At the same time, we have an important role to play in advancing innovation in the transportation sector, ensuring we have the infrastructure and the services in place to facilitate the movement of people and goods. We also need to adapt to climate change, reduce air pollution and embrace new technologies to improve greenhouse gas emissions from the transportation sector.
Almost a year ago, Minister Garneau unveiled a vision for the future of transportation up to 2030. Transport Canada is working to implement that vision through programs and initiatives that are centred around five key themes: enhancing the experience of the Canadian traveller; building a safer, more secure transportation system that earns the confidence of Canadians; investing in a greener, more innovative transportation sector that embraces new technologies to improve Canadians' lives; protecting Canada's waterways, coasts, and the north; and, improving Canada's transportation infrastructure and trade corridors to get products to global markets more efficiently.
Through our supplementary estimates, Transport Canada is seeking a total of $72.5 million in funding to help support some of these goals. Of this amount, over half is for investments in transportation services, infrastructure, and the development of environmentally sustainable transportation.
We are requesting $47.5 million in new funding announced in budget 2017 for four key initiatives: the ferry service contribution program, which provides funding to support interprovincial ferry transportation in Atlantic Canada and eastern Quebec; implementing the trade and transportation corridor initiative, which will support investments in infrastructure and measures to support innovative transportation; adapting to the effects of climate change and reducing Canada's greenhouse gas emissions; and, the indigenous advisory and monitoring committee for energy infrastructure projects.
Our request also includes $24.3 million in existing funding that is being carried forward from the last fiscal year to 2017-18 to match the department's level of funding with its expected spending this year.
In addition, a number of transfers to other departments for various programs will reduce Transport Canada's spending by $900,000.
Finally, there is an item of $1.6 million for statutory employee benefit plan costs related to the projects I've mentioned, and an internal transfer of $200,000 to allow the listing of the grant for the northern transportation adaptation initiative.
To sum up, the funding I have outlined today will allow Transport Canada to continue delivering on its mandate, supporting government priorities, while also ensuring we are prudent and responsible in managing our resources.
Madam Chair, my colleagues and I are happy to answer any questions the committee might have.