With over 12,000 people signing the Fair Fares petition to protect bus services in Norfolk and to receive a better funding package from the government, our campaign goes from strength to strength. However, new figures revealed by the county council this week underline the importance of keeping up the pressure on ministers.
A report to senior councillors suggest that on top of the current £4.5 million funding shortfall, they face an additional £800,000 gap in the finances as a result of higher inflation and increase numbers of free bus pass holders. Without extra support from the government, councillors will have to consider cutting services in order to maintain the free bus pass for the disabled and pensioners. This latest news was highlighted in Friday’s edition of the Great Yarmouth Mercury.
The current funding crisis is a legacy of the last Labour government failing to fund properly the popular concessionary bus scheme, as I highlighted in my recent debate in the House of Commons.