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Friday, 16 August 2013

Kent Greens Call For Public Ownership of Railways

Following another round of inflation-busting fare rises the Kent Green Party is calling for the public ownership of our railways. Party spokesperson, Councillor Ian Driver,  said “Fares will be increasing  by an average of 4.3% in the new year and on some routes even more,  that’s much greater than the pay rises received by most  working people in Kent.”

“Figures show  that whilst the average wage has increased by 15% since January 2008, rail fares have increased by an eye-watering 40% over the same period(1). A lot of this money is being siphoned off as profits and shareholder dividends by greedy privatised train operators,  instead of being re-invested into improving our railway system and keeping down fare rises.This why our railways are amongst the most expensive in Europe”. “The Green Party believes that the costly  and wasteful structure of our rail industry which was caused by its 1993 privatisation,  should be replaced by a joined-up, more cost-efficient publically owned organisation(2)”.
 
“The TUC and many of its affiliated unions support the call for public ownership of our railways and a recent report by  think tank  Transport for Quality of Life, demonstrates that a publically owned railway would, allowing for investment and improvements,  be cheaper to run and cost less to use than the dysfunctional, expensive and unreliable  service we have today (3)”.

KENT GREEN NEWS, free ezine, is available by subscription at www.kentgreenparty.org
Notes


(1)
Average Earnings (January)
Rail fares (January)
2008
3.8%
6.1%
2009
2.3%
7.6%
2010
1.1%
0.7%
2011
2.6%
6.0%
2012
1.3%
6.2%
2013
1.2%
3.9%
2014
2.4%
4.3%
15.6%
40.2%

(1)Figures provided by the Trades Union Congress http://www.tuc.org.uk/industrial/tuc-22457-f0.cfm
(2) see Green Party Transport Policy http://policy.greenparty.org.uk/tr
(3) Transport for Quality of Life Rebuilding Rail June 2012 http://transportforqualityoflife.com/

2 comments:

  1. But , the tax payer is paying less, the user is paying more...As a pensioner who does not use the railway, but pays tax... I think its going ok!!

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  2. The problem with percentages is that they present a false picture. A 4.3% rise on a £4000 season ticket would be another £172, on a £5000 ticket, £215. An average earner on £26500 with a 2.4% pay increase would receive another £636 before tax. Thus the pay rise will outstrip the fare rise for the average commuter, and still leave some to spare. And I am sure that most commuters earn more than the national average.

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