Despite cross-party support for the Bus Services Act that recently passed through Parliament, the Leader of the Opposition and Liberal Democrat Group Leader on Oldham Council, Councillor Howard Sykes MBE, has real concerns that the Government will ‘miss the bus’ when it comes to putting into place the necessary regulations to make this new piece of legislation actually work.
Councillor Sykes represents Oldham Council on the Transport for Greater Manchester Committee.
The Department for Transport ran a public consultation on the key regulations and guidance associated with the Bus Services Act from 8 February 2017 to 21 March 2017. The legislation has now gone through Parliament, and Councillor Sykes cannot understand the delay in bringing in the necessary regulatory framework.
“The Buses Bill held out the promise of better, more responsive bus services that will attract more passengers and a greater investment in vehicles and so reduce traffic congestion and pollution,” stated Councillor Sykes.
“The worry is that if the Government fails to act now that the legislation will be neutered at a moment in time. It has been made clear that Parliament later this year and especially in 2018, will become increasingly focused on Brexit. There will be ‘no time’ to deal with important domestic matters such as the regulations for the Bus Services Act. We need better bus services now, so what is the problem and why are we being kept waiting.”