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  • The Regina Airport Authority is the public, not-for-profit agency that oversees management of the Regina International Airport, which serves the Canadian city of Regina, and, indeed, the entire southern part of the province of Saskatchewan, a region that contains about 495,000 people. The authority owes its existence to a policy begun in the 1990s under the Liberal federal government of turning over the operation of major Canadian airports to locally-based bodies—though Ottawa retains ownership of the airports. In policy terms, this has process has been regarded as a mixed blessing. Authorities are undoubtedly more open and more responsive to users and to the communities around them than was the former operator, the Canadian federal Department of Transport. One veteran Transport Canada employee quipped that federal oversight was so detailed that more constructive work and planning could be done in a 15-minute coffee break among airport authority managers than in six months of dealing with Ottawa! Federal government policy has been to burden airport authorities with high rents and other charges that force these authorities to apply user fees to passenger tickets in order to raise money for capital improvements. Depending on one's perspective, this is either the "user-pay" principle or shameless federal downloading of a federal responsibility.

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