Financing the GLA (Supplementary) [15]

Session date: 
September 19, 2001
Question By: 
John Biggs
Organisation: 
Labour Group
Asked Of: 
The Mayor

Question

The problem that many Labour Members and supporters have with your Budget strategy is that it does not seem to include enough analysis of the alternatives. We all want to have rail links and bridges and more police; but every Londoner has to make hard budget decisions every day, and if we are going to sell it to Londoners, we need to see that you have done the same. Clearly you have a problem, in that you are a two-club golfer. You have congestion charging and the precept, and you may have aspirations to go elsewhere. There is a case for saying that although, as Mayor, you want to extend the transport system, you are trying to extend it too quickly, without the necessary resources. That may be an argument that you have with Government, but it should not be an argument that we have with Londoners.

Supplementary To: 

Answer

Answer for Financing the GLA (Supplementary) [15]

Answer for Financing the GLA (Supplementary) [15]

Answered By: 
The Mayor

If we work on the assumption that, in the next financial year, we will finally get the Underground, the income to the GLA family in total will be £6 billion. Fifty-nine per cent of that will be from Government grant; 28% will be from the farepayer; 7% from the precept; 6% from pension contributions by firefighters and police officers; and 1% from everything else. I know that that does not add up to 100%, but it is the best I can do off the top of my head.

That is why I want to move the fare decision to be part of the Budget process as well. Those are our only sources of income. I wish it were otherwise. Where we will be in a much stronger position this year is that Bob Kiley's team have pulled together a vast amount of work so that we will have a properly costed programme of transport projects. All the things we have talked about for 25 or 30 years will be there. On Friday, Bob and I will draw up what we believe to be the right order of priorities for London - what should go ahead first. We will submit that to the Assembly for your views, and for wider public consultation. At the end of the day, once you and Londoners and the media have had a chance to kick it around, we will come back and finalise the list of priorities. Then, when we know what Government grant we are getting at the end of the year, we will sit down and decide what we think Londoners can afford to pay for.