Update - subsidised bus services
The extension is being proposed to ensure that subsidised bus services remain in place in their current format until the end of the 2015/16 school year.
Meanwhile the county council is also responding to requests made for usage data.
The council had already made available the limited data it had used to test the methodology. However it has become apparent there is more usage data available. It is not considered that this information changes the methodology, or the decision made by cabinet and full council.
Nonetheless the county council considers it important that members of the public have a chance to review and comment on this data. Cabinet will be asked to approve this course of action at their meeting on March 15.
On 10 November 2015 Oxfordshire County Council’s cabinet met to consider public feedback to the subsidised bus service and Dial-a-Ride service proposals that were put forward in a consultation held between June 19 and September 15, and to then make a decision about how to make the savings needed from these services.
They took the decision that the council withdraw subsidies paid to run 118 subsidised bus routes in Oxfordshire. This decision was approved at the full council’s overall budget setting meeting on 16 February 2016.
It is important to note that the withdrawal of an Oxfordshire County Council bus subsidy does not necessarily mean that the service will be cancelled (or subsidised portion of the service). The operator may decide to continue running it without any Oxfordshire County Council subsidy (or another operator step in and take it on).
Oxfordshire County Council is in discussions with operators and will work with them to try to maintain or commercialise services wherever possible if a subsidy is withdrawn.