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Manuel Cortes welcomes ScotRail Public Sector bidder announcement, argues franchise system a waste of money

23 August 2018

Manuel Cortes today welcomed Michael Matheson’s announcement that Public Sector bidders will be able to bid for next ScotRail franchise but argued the "wasteful" franchise system needs scrapping altogether.

The report by Common Weal and TSSA “A public future for Scotland’s railways” shows that the franchising system costs operators £30million, money Cortes claimed would be better spent on improving ScotRail services.

Cortes said, “Our union has always believed that Scotland’s taxpayers deserve the best rail service. Instead of wasting money on consultants to guide them through the franchise process a directly appointed public body could invest in more staff, better rolling stock and better toilets on the trains. The franchise process means passengers pay more and get less”

“It’s also disappointing that Matheson has chosen not to use the break clause in Abellio’s contract. They’ve failed to meet their franchise obligations throughout their contract. If the public were getting this poor a service from their television provider, they would have switched months ago. Matheson’s decision means Scotland’s passengers can look forward to another 7 years of rail misery.”


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