TSSA General Secretary, Manuel Cortes, has said the findings of an independent review of Transport for London's long-term funding options shows the capital is "getting a raw deal" and called for the return of the operating grant.
The report was commissioned in July this year by Sadiq Khan, the Mayor of London, to look at future financial sustainability of the transport network across the city, and has just been published.
Commenting, transport union boss Cortes said: “We welcome the fact that there are proposals being put forward to stop the overreliance of Transport for London (TfL) on the fare box.
“The report is right to note that TfL’s funding ‘varies significantly’ from other major world cities and is ‘more reliant on fare revenues’. That is something out union has been stressing for years. In other words – London is getting a raw deal on funding, with budgets badly cut and yet more planned.
“This is down to Boris Johnson, who agreed to get rid of London's operating grant for transport when he was Mayor. Had that not happened we would now be in a much better position to face the future.
“The report is clear – things have to change if we are to have an effective and safe transport system across our capital city. The operating grant must be reinstated because, as the report’s authors point out, TfL is facing a spending gap of around £2billion each year on top of the operating expenses.
“However, the one thing that our union won't tolerate is our members having their terms and conditions attacked including their pensions. These brave workers have been at the forefront of efforts to keep our capital city moving in the face of the pandemic and can’t lose out as a result.
“As our London Mayor, Sadiq Khan, rightly says, Ministers must play fair by Londoners.”
Note - *TfL’s budget is £700m a year lower after the Government’s decision in 2015 to remove the operating grant.