The CTA’s comment on the Government’s response to the Transport Committee is generally very positive. The CTA:
- Is encouraged by data from VOSA which indicates the number of section 22 community bus permits issued each year is increasing. There are around 160 registered bus routes in England and Wales run by CT organisations under a section 22 community bus permit.
- Will continue to work with Government, Local Government Association, ATCO and local and integrated transport authorities, to promote the benefits of new opportunities contained in the Local Transport Act 2008 and promote community-based transport solutions more widely.
- Is disappointed the Government still does not support the Transport Committee’s endorsement of the CTA’s long held position that the current concessionary fares scheme is “discriminatory” and Government should legislate to permit the use of concessionary passes on a wider range of CT services.
- Wants to see the reform of Bus Service Operator’s Grant (BSOG) recognise the importance of this subsidy to CT and retain it as a centrally funded investment.
CTA’s chief executive, Keith Halstead, said: “CTA is encouraged by the increase in Section 22 permits reported by the Government in its response to the Committee’s report and will continue to support our 1500 members in introducing further community bus services. However, we are disappointed Government rejects the TC’s recommendation it should legislate to enable the use of the national concessionary travel scheme on a wider range of community transport services.”