House of Lords written question – answered on 15th July 2008.

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Photo of Lord Bradshaw Lord Bradshaw Spokesperson in the Lords, Transport

asked Her Majesty's Government:

What steps they are taking to improve the availability of bus services in rural areas.

Photo of Lord Bassam of Brighton Lord Bassam of Brighton Government Whip, Government Whip

It is for each local authority to decide the priority that it attaches to financial support for rural bus services in its area. The resources available to include revenue support grant from central government and the inclusion within area-based funding of rural bus subsidy grant which totals £57 million this financial year.

The measures in the Local Transport Bill, now before Parliament, will help enable local authorities to improve the availability and quality of bus services in rural and urban areas alike. These measures include strengthened arrangements for partnerships between local authorities and bus operators, expanding the role of community transport, extending the existing taxi-bus provisions to the private hire vehicle sector and for the first time the establishment of a statutory bus passengers' champion.

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