Despite the Assembly Government experiencing severe cuts to its budget from the Westminster government, this year’s Local Transport Services Grant (LTSG) continues, relatively unchanged. It is also being allocated earlier than usual to help local authorities support subsidised transport services, and maintain the networks already in place, without undue worry to operators and passengers.
Mr Jones, who is also the Minister for Economy and Transport said,
“We are determined that this grant continues to play an important role in supporting services that are not provided by bus operators on a commercial basis. It is used to support a wide range of initiatives and essential transport links for people in rural areas, and is the main source of funding for community transport.
"The financial constraints we now find ourselves in mean that there are many tough decisions ahead. Despite this we want to continue supporting local and rural transport, as they not only improve our communities, but also assist the more vulnerable and disadvantaged groups in our society; groups this Government will not leave behind.”
This year’s allocation represents a modest reduction of less than 3% on the amount provided to authorities in 2010/11.
All local authorities will benefit from the funding, of which at least 10% of each area’s allocation must be used for community transport services. We have now written to individual authorities to inform them of their individual allocations for 2011-12.
The grants package will also help deliver the commitments in the National Transport Plan to improve local bus services and improve access to key sites.