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Phillipson calls on government to clear up devolution confusion

Houghton and Sunderland South MP, Bridget Phillipson has called on the government to clear up the confusion about a key devolution commitment to re-franchise bus services.

The report by the Quality Contracts Scheme board, published on 3rd November, calls in to question the region's plans to re-regulate buses and integrate the public transport system. It recommends that areas that implement re-regulation should compensate bus companies with hundreds of millions of pounds.

Stagecoach have now called on the government to review plans to allow regions like the north east to re-franchise bus services, jeopardising a key north east devolution pledge agreed less than two weeks ago on the 23rd October.

Speaking in Parliament, Bridget Phillipson MP said:

“Many people from across the north east will be disappointed by this week’s report by the Quality Contract Scheme board into the future of north east bus services. This report puts at risk a key devolution commitment made less than a fortnight ago to give the north east bus franchising powers once again. Will the Leader of the House arrange for a statement to be made to clear up this confusion and offer reassurance that our devolution deal is worth the paper it’s written on.”

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