Everyday transport at serious risk from budget cuts
A group of leading transport organisations are warning that everyday transport is at serious risk of large-scale government budget cuts following the Chancellor’s spending review.
Campaign for Better Transport, pteg, Living Streets, Sustrans and the Campaign to Protect Rural England, claim that with funding for major investment programmes for roads and railways ring-fenced, cuts of 25-40 percent will hit local transport the hardest. The social and economic consequences of this would be hugely damaging with reduced access to jobs for unemployed people, increased isolation among those reliant on buses, regeneration programmes being undermined and fewer people encouraged to make healthier travel choices.
In a joint letter to Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin, the groups are calling on government to protect and enhance local roads, pavements, bus services, cycling and walking through smarter spending, rebalancing capital and revenue funding, and reviewing major transport programmes.
Stephen Joseph, Chief Executive of the Campaign for Better Transport, said: "Our analysis shows that the Spending Review risks hitting very hard the everyday transport that people and communities rely on, while programmes like big road building schemes will escape unscathed. We hope the Transport Secretary will ensure that the Review has a better balance between the major capital programmes and the funding for this everyday transport".
The groups plan to push their case in response to the Treasury’s consultation on the Spending Review which closes on 4 September, and to MPs when Parliament returns in the autumn.
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