Mr. Speaker, I want to remind the government once again about the high cost of living in Canada's north. Here is an example. Many Canadians are alarmed that they may have to pay $1 for each extra gigabyte of Internet. In the north, the average for each extra gig is $10, and they start counting at as little as two gigs.
In December the aboriginal affairs and northern development committee released its unanimous report on northern economic development. The report recommended:
That the Government of Canada, to facilitate the development of the northern economy by attracting and retaining more skilled workers, consider enhancing the Northern Residents Tax Deduction to more fully compensate for the costs of living faced by individuals in the North, and consider a policy that provides universality to the travel portion of the Northern Residents Tax Deduction.
The 2007 budget gave an insufficient modest increase. What northerners need this year is an increase in the range of 50%. The Minister of Finance should really look at this, because he is the one who could deliver on this for northerners.