Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Bristol Lib Dem cuts in support for public transport

FERRY and rail services will be affected by one of the biggest shake-ups of taxpayer-funded public transport Bristol has seen.

Bristol City Council is putting all of its subsidised transport services out to tender from next month, inviting companies to bid for the right to run them.

The Evening Post revealed how this would affect local bus services last week, but it will also affect a number of ferry and rail services that serve the city.

The council part-funds the Bristol Ferry Boat Company weekday commuter service between Cascade Steps and Hotwells Road; the cross-harbour ferry between the ss Great Britain and Porto Quay; and the Severn Beach rail line between Severn Beach and Temple Meads...

Bristol's transport boss Cllr Gary Hopkins says this not about cuts. The Post story says the council would like to cut its support for train, ferry and bus services by this move. Something's got to give somewhere if support is cut, so does Cllr Hopkins want to correct his statement or does he not bother with logic much??

Government at all levels should ensure the incentives are right for all modes of transport and should ensure that the price we all pay for travelling reflects its total net cost ie accounting for external costs and benefits as well as private costs and benefits. This would mean that clean, efficient and safer, more sustainable transport would be cheapest, so improving the incentives to use it and putting all transport on a rational footing. As it is now dirty, unhealthy, unsafe, inefficient transport modes like cars and lorries are wrongly given priority.

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