Greens stand up for public ownership
20 July 2016
Key Green Party figures have spoken out against Clause 21 of the Bus Services Bill, which would prohibit local authorities from setting up their own publicly owned bus companies.
The Bill will be heard at a Committee Stage in the House of Lords today.
Jenny Jones, Baroness Jones of Moulsecoomb, said:
“Hidden in what is otherwise an excellent bill - allowing local authorities to set maximum fares, introduce joint tickets and travel zones, and set bus timetables - Clause 21 of the Bus Services Bill would, disastrously, prevent local authorities from running their own bus services.
“This is despite evidence that the public ownership of buses could save £506 million a year; that private ownership of bus services means that £277 million every year goes to shareholders instead of services; and that 40% of that revenue comes from local authorities and national government.
“The Green Party believes in returning public services to public hands wherever possible, and public ownership is often the most cost-effective option. I will be opposing the move to take away this power from local authorities.”
Caroline Russel AM, the party's transport spokesperson, said:
"Public ownership of buses is cost effective, provides alternatives to car-use to help clean up our air and gives people access to work, shops, services and leisure especially for those living in areas not already served by public transport. Clause 21, limiting the powers of Local authorities to help their communities with affordable bus services, is a perverse piece of legislation and should be dropped.”
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