TfL Business Plan

Meeting: 
Plenary on 2009-06-14
Session date: 
June 14, 2009
Reference: 
2009/0078
Question By: 
Valerie Shawcross
Organisation: 
Labour Group
Asked Of: 
Boris Johnson (Chair, TfL) and Sir Peter Hendy (Commissioner, TfL)

Question

The TfL Business Plan shows a real terms funding subsidy cut of 8% per bus kilometre over the whole period of the plan. Will this mean even lower bus driver salaries?

Answer

Answer for TfL Business Plan

Answer for TfL Business Plan

Answered By: 
Boris Johnson (Chair, TfL) and Sir Peter Hendy (Commissioner, TfL)

Bus driver salaries in London are now about 50% higher than they were in 2001, representing rises significantly above RPI in each year. In the 2008 settlements, driver wages went up on average by around 4-5%. Bus drivers play a key role in delivering our quality bus network, for which they now earn a decent salary. There is, of course, absolutely no intention to drive down bus driver salaries in future.

The subsidy reflects changes in income as well as cost. The net subsidy for the bus network as a whole is flat in real terms over the period of the TfL Business Plan. This is because there are many more factors that go to make up the cost of the bus network including:

- Fares: these increase by above inflation thereby reducing subsidy, all other things being equal. - Passenger numbers grow (very slightly) faster than the kilometre operated thereby reducing subsidy, all other things being equal. - Bus costs rise by more than inflation, thereby increasing subsidy, all other things being equal.

The balance of these factors (and others such as average trip length/passenger kilometre) lead to the overall subsidy position. You therefore can't draw the conclusion you reach that decreasing subsidy per kilometre equals lower driver wages, as there are other factors at play.