Local Transport Bill [Lords]

Part of the debate – in a Public Bill Committee at 4:00 pm on 22nd April 2008.

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Photo of Rosie Winterton Rosie Winterton Minister of State (Regional Affairs) (Yorkshire and the Humber), Minister of State (Department for Transport) 4:00 pm, 22nd April 2008

As I understand it, we have not said that specifically in the Bill. Clearly, general principles would be in the guidance. The Secretary of State could not direct a particular case and say that a commissioner ought to find in a particular way. The guidance is not legally binding—it is guidance.

The type of issue that might be covered could be that bus punctuality should improve. The guidance would look to the traffic commissioners to do that. General guidance to traffic commissioners might be to look at how they can work to improve bus punctuality, but a traffic commissioner would not be breaking the law if he or she did not succeed in improving bus punctuality, because that would obviously be unreasonable. I assure the Committee that the guidance will be about general principles. From the senior traffic commissioner onwards to the other traffic commissioner it would be about how to achieve; for example there could be details about how other traffic commissioners might achieve bus punctuality. The guidance is only about the exercise of the senior traffic commissioner functions, not individual traffic commissioners.