Decision details

Bus Operator Enhanced Partnership (National Bus Strategy)

Decision Maker: Director of Transport and Engineering

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: No

Decision:

To commit to entering into a statutory Enhanced Partnership with the BCP area local bus service operators in accordance with the Bus Services Act 2017 and to support the aspirations of the National Bus Strategy for England.

Reasons for the decision:

The recently published National Bus Strategy for England sets out an ambition for every local transport authority and bus operator in England to be in a statutory Enhanced Partnership or a franchising arrangement (entering into an EP does not preclude franchising in the future, however, achieving franchising is a lengthy and complex with significant financial risk).

Improving bus services to attract more passengers is a joint aim of the bus operators and the Local Transport Authority (LTA).

An Enhanced Partnership will build on the good work undertaken through the voluntary Quality Bus Partnership over the last two decades.

Not entering into an Enhanced Partnership will result in a significant financial funding loss for the council and for the bus operators.

LTAs are required to commit to establishing Enhanced Partnerships across their entire areas under the Bus Services Act 2017, and all bus operators to co-operate with the LTA throughout the process. If this requirement is not met LTAs and operators will no longer receive Covid-19 Bus Services Support Grant (CBSSG), Bus Service Operators Grant (BSOG) or any new sources of bus funding from the £3bn budget.

Publication date: 24/06/2021

Date of decision: 23/06/2021

Accompanying Documents: