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Cortes Calls for Parliamentary Inquiry into Crossrail Contracts

1 November 2018

TSSA General Secretary Manuel Cortes has written to Chair of the Commons Transport Committee calling for an inquiry into suggestions no penalty clauses were inserted into the final Crossrail contract agreements.

Cortes wrote to Lilian Greenwood, Labour Chair of the Committee, asking that MPs urgently examine what he described as “deeply alarming” claims which emerged shortly after Department for Transport gave the green light to a £350m ‘interim loan’ to help the Crossrail project over the line.

In his letter Cortes states: "Clearly that is another significant outlay from the public purse in order to ensure the final stages of Crossrail, already significantly delayed, are eventually delivered.

"While we support the completion of Crossrail my union feels that given this sizable public investment, the public must now be made fully aware of the terms of this loan, ultimately sanctioned by Chris Grayling.

"In the light of this £350m taxpayer cash injection I have been made aware of deeply concerning claims that no suitable penalty clauses were inserted into the final Crossrail contract agreements signed in late 2010.

"Of course this development also comes at a time when the Government’s £750m cut to London’s transport budget is really beginning to bite.

"I am now writing to ask that as a matter of urgency the Transport Select Committee quickly inquires to determine the veracity of these claims relating to the Crossrail contracts.

"If proven these would be nothing short of a major scandal and again prove that the DfT, under the Conservatives, is failing to keep on top of even the most basic detail and unable to secure value for money for passengers and the public.

"I have no doubt your Committee will share these concerns and wish to seek clarity over such important issues, especially those relating to lack of penalty clauses".

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