News from Keith Prince: Nominee passes now costing TfL over £33million a year
Travel perk grants free travelcards for flatmates of TfL staff
– Mayor urged to give firefighters free travel instead at a fraction of the cost
A perk that grants free travel to the flatmates of TfL staff now costs London taxpayers over £33million a year in lost revenue, research shows.
London Assembly member Keith Prince wants the Mayor to scrap the ‘ridiculous and unnecessary’ bonus and instead offer firefighters free travel at a fraction of the cost.
TfL currently allows staff to hand out free travelcards to friends, lodgers, family members or anyone else living at their address(1) at a cost of £33.3million(2) a year.
Firefighters could instead be given free travel at an estimated £19.8million in total for the next four years(2), providing a worthwhile perk for lifesaving public servants and saving the taxpayer some 113.2million by 2020.
London Assembly member Keith Prince said:
“It seems ludicrous that the taxpayer has to foot a bill of over £33million a year just so TfL staff can hand out free travelcards to their mates.
“It would be hard enough to justify this perk under normal circumstances, but at a time when the Mayor is seeking to save more than £640million from within TfL because of his disastrous fares freeze it really takes the biscuit.
“The Mayor needs to scrap this ridiculous and unnecessary perk immediately. By doing so he could save TfL and the taxpayer millions in vital revenue and still have money left over to provide our firefighters with a valuable thank you for their work.”
1. Presently, staff working for TfL are entitled to nominate someone living in their property, whether a family member, friend or lodger to receive free travel on the buses, tube and DLR. This perk is not part of the employee contract and could be rescinded by transport bosses at any time.
2. Full costings below
3. It has been assumed that two journeys are made per operational firefighter every working day, at the average cost of £3.60 per journey (detailed in the linked report). This equates to 1,376,144 journeys per annum and £4,954,118 per annum in costs. Thus, providing free travel to all operational firefighters in line with the police would cost £19,816,472 up to and including 2020. – http://glaconservatives.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/Free-Ride.pdf
4. Keith Prince is the GLA Conservatives’ transport spokesman