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Bus Operators (Subsidies)

Volume 927: debated on Monday 7 March 1977

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asked the Secretary of State for Transport what evidence he has of any general change in the level of support in 1977–78 for bus operators now planned by county councils compared with the levels contained in the approved transport supplementary grants; and what advice he intends to give to local authorities on this matter.

I have no information on how much county councils will actually spend on bus revenue support in the forthcoming financial year and will not be in a position to know until the authorities have determined their budgets for 1977–78.The 1977–78 transport supplementary grant settlement and the acceptance of shire county estimates for bus revenue support reflected the special importance I attach to the maintenance of minimum levels of service in rural areas. The shire counties are aware of my views and I hope that they will be acted upon.

asked the Secretary of State for Transport what levels of support to National Bus Company subsidiaries are included in each county council's revenue support bid accepted by his Department in the 1977–78 transport supplementary grant allocation; and what proportion of the National Bus Company's request each of these figures represents.

Precise information for each county is not available. In England as a whole, however, the National Bus Company estimates that some 60–70 per cent. of its subsidiaries' total claims were included in counties' estimates of expenditure on bus revenue support for 1977–78.