It has been confirmed in the spending review that BSOG is to be protected until 2015/16.
The review documentation stated efficiency savings have been identified by TfL and within rail budgets. The long-term funding certainty provided to the Highways Agency and Transport for London will generate significant efficiency savings in budgets beyond 2015-16.
“These savings ensure the government is able to protect spending on buses and roads and avoid additional rail fare increases – helping those on lower incomes,” the review stated.
The CPT has welcomed the news, and its CEO Simon Posner said: “We are delighted the Government has recognised the importance of retaining BSOG. BSOG is a simple yet highly effective tool which makes a direct and positive impact on transport. The evidence shows it results in lower fares and helps maintain services which encourages more passengers to take the bus.
“Buses are the most critical and most used mode of public transport in the UK and we enjoy one of the most comprehensive bus networks in Europe. Today’s announcement, which further demonstrates the government’s understanding of the vital role buses play in the economic and social wellbeing of the Country, is good news for bus passengers.
“We are pleased that, once again, Transport Minister Norman Baker has demonstrated his deep understanding of and commitment to the needs of bus passengers.
“Measures such as this which help to maintain service levels and encourage people to use their local bus services can only be a good thing.”