Network Rail operates under a network licence enforced and monitored by the independent Office of Rail Regulation, which also sets the spending and expected outputs for the railway over the current five-year Control Period 5 covering 2014-19. The Office of Rail Regulation continues to monitor and oversee Network Rail’s delivery of outputs, efficiency and financial performance against what it has challenged Network Rail to deliver in its Determination for Control Period 5.
The Framework Agreement between Network Rail and the Department for Transport sets out the new approach to governance, financing, accounting and budgeting following Network Rail’s reclassification to the public sector. It has been written with reference to “Managing Public Money”, the HM Treasury guidance on the principles for managing public resources.
The Framework Agreement includes a requirement upon Network Rail to provide regular financial information, and to lay a copy of its accounts in Parliament.