Executive Members are asked to consider the contents of the report and recommend to the Chief Executive Officer that using his emergency powers he:
i. Agrees to the publication of the Bus Service Improvement Plan at Annex 1;
ii. Delegates authority to the Corporate Director Business and Environmental Services in consultation with the Corporate Director Strategic Resources to submit the final BSIP,
iii Authorises the Corporate Director Strategic Resources to accept the funding;
Considered – A report of the Corporate Director – Business and Environmental Services seeking Executive Members’ consideration of the County Council’s draft Bus Service Improvement Plan.
County Councillor Don Mackenzie thanked Ruth Annison for her public statement submission and acknowledged her commitment to public transport and her ongoing and helpful engagement.
In regard to the ongoing demand responsive pilot in the north Ripon area, he noted it had had a good start and that the positive feedback outweighed the negative. He confirmed the trial was only three months in and that so far the signs were good but it was still too soon to decide whether it should be introduced elsewhere.
He went on to introduce the report and provided an overview of the background to the report and the requirements of the National Bus Strategy, “Bus Back Better”. He confirmed the importance of bus services, and outlined the cost of those services to the Authority. He also noted the ongoing challenge of providing regular sustainable bus services to its sparse population throughout the vast geography of North Yorkshire. He recognised the BSIP was ambitious and noted the BSIP was designed to achieve a high quality co-ordinated integrated bus network, with simple payments and tickets, clear and concise information, and excellent customer service.
Michael Leah, Assistant Director for Travel & Environment, Waste and Countryside Services, provided an outline of the timeframe for the creation of the BSIP and went on to give an overview of the set of asks within it. He highlighted the necessary third party funding contributions to deliver specific elements of the BSIP, and the total funding required to achieve its full delivery. Finally he drew attention to the planned stakeholder and public consultation event.
In considering the proposed BSIP, Members noted the tight timescale for its completion and the further amendments still required. They also noted the approach that would be taken should the full funding not be realised.
Having considered the report, Executive Members agreed to recommend to the Chief Executive Officer that using his emergency powers he:
i. Agree to the publication of the Bus Service Improvement Plan at Annex 1;
ii. Delegate authority to the Corporate Director Business and Environmental Services in consultation with the Corporate Director Strategic Resources to submit the final BSIP,
iii. Authorise the Corporate Director Strategic Resources to accept the funding;