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Mayor urged to tell East Enders where axe will fall over transport funding cuts

PUBLISHED: 12:41 08 November 2010

Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, poses for photographs with a bicycle during the launch of the London Cycle Hire bicycle scheme in central London, on July 30, 2010.

Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, poses for photographs with a bicycle during the launch of the London Cycle Hire bicycle scheme in central London, on July 30, 2010.

2010 AFP

BORIS Johnson has been urged to come clean over where transport cuts in Tower Hamlets will fall.

East London Assembly member John Biggs has called on Transport for London and the London Mayor to announce where the Government’s axe will fall over plans for a 28 per cent cut in local transport.

The cuts, following the comprehensive spending review on 20 October, will affect cycling, bus services, pot hole repairs, school travel plans and bridge strengthening but will not affect Crossrail or tube upgrades.

The size of the cuts were revealed by TfL finance chiefs during a London Assembly budget committee meeting last week.

Finance chief Steve Allen confirmed TfL plans to cut the amount of money provided to councils for local transport improvements by an average of 28 per cent next year.

Mr Biggs said: “This huge cut will affect transport projects from road maintenance to school travel. The mayor needs to come clean about which projects are going to go because of his failure to protect London from the Government’s cuts.

“This funding is essential for anyone who walks, cycles or uses the roads and public transport in Tower Hamlets and the mayor should have done more to fight for them.

“Instead, ordinary Londoners are being asked to pay for a black hole they had nothing to do with creating.

“If the Mayor really wanted to save money he could look again at his wildly expensive plans to build an airport in the Thames, his plans to spend millions unnecessarily building a new bus and scrapping hundreds of perfectly serviceable ones, or he could reverse his decision to throw away millions by halving the congestion charge zone.”

Tower Hamlets currently receives £2.4m after Boris Johnson cut funding by £600,000 from £3m last year. A further 28 per cent cut would mean Tower Hamlets receiving just over £1.7m to spend on local transport projects next year.


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