At the beginning of June Transport for London reached an agreement with the Government which extends financial support for services until December 2021. The additional £1.08 billion of base funding means that TfL will be able to:
- Continue to attract customers back and support the recovery of London;
- Advance with the completion of major projects such as the Elizabeth line, Northern line extension, expansion of the London Overground to Barking Riverside, upgrading signalling on the Circle, District, Hammersmith & City and Metropolitan lines, and the rebuild of Bank station;
- Continue with innovative and creative schemes to decarbonise transport and to clean up London’s air quality through the expansion of ULEZ, further electrifying the bus fleet, promoting active travel and improving road safety
London’s Transport Commissioner Andy Byford said:“The pandemic – during which our staff have worked so magnificently to keep London moving – has shown our financial model, with such a disproportionate reliance on fare revenue, to be not fit for purpose…..
“….. The conditions placed on us by the Government agreement and the amount of funding we will receive means we need to find a further £900m of savings or new income this year compared to our approved Budget and on top of the £730m of savings already assumed in our Business Plan.”
The Government has explicitly required TfL to deliver at least an additional £300m in savings and/or new income within this financial year. But even with the additional funding there is a funding shortfall which means TfL will need to find nearer £900m in savings and/or new income.
Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan said: “It’s important to remember that TfL only needs emergency funding from the Government because its income from fares dropped by up to 90 per cent because Londoners followed the rules by staying at home and avoiding public transport during the lockdown.
“This short-term settlement is yet another sticking plaster so I will seek to work with the Government over the months ahead to agree a longer-term funding deal for TfL that is both fair and right for Londoners and the whole country.”