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Road transport

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Government outlines plans to improve free bus pass scheme

Plans to improve the delivery of the concessionary bus pass scheme were announced by the Transport Minister Paul Clark, as he launched a consultation on possible changes to the way the scheme is administered.

One option being considered is to give county councils responsibility for running the scheme. Currently administration of the scheme is mainly handled by district councils, but the Government believes a change will simplify the system and allow for the more accurate distribution of funding.

Local Authorities receive around £1 billion to fund the statutory concessionary bus pass scheme in their area, which gives 11 million older and disabled people free off-peak bus travel across England.

Paul Clark said;

"Concessionary travel is a successful and popular policy. A recent survey suggests around 95% of the population believe it's right that older and disabled people are entitled to travel for free on off-peak buses.

"We're confident there is enough money in the system, but we need to ensure that the right structures are in place to administer it.

"I look forward to hearing people's views on how to guarantee that pass holders get the most out of this billion pound scheme and concessionary travel remains sustainable for the future."

The administrative arrangements for concessionary travel have remained the same since the statutory minimum bus concession was introduced in 2001. Since then various changes have been made to improve and extend the scope of the concession, and in April last year the limitation of local area only travel was replaced by free England-wide off-peak bus travel.



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Wednesday, April 22, 2009

US Secretary of Transportation Says Cost Savings Returned to States

Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood reminded the nation's governors and state Secretaries of Transportation today that any money they save on transportation projects paid for with American Recovery and Reinvestment Act dollars must be used for additional transportation projects.

Across the country, reports are showing that contractor bids to build and repair transportation networks are coming in substantially below the original engineering estimates. In some cases, thanks to fierce competition for the work and the low price of petroleum, bids are 10, 20 and even 30 percent lower than expected.

In a letter, Secretary LaHood urged the governors and transportation secretaries to take those cost savings and use the money for additional projects that will put more people to work.

"We will work with you to ensure that your state benefits from your frugality," LaHood wrote. "Savings you accrue from awarding low bids, and from reduced construction costs due to your oversight and project management should remain in your state to be spent on other eligible transportation projects."

In just seven weeks, the Department of Transportation has approved over 2,400 requests worth $7.5 billion for highway, road, bridge and airport construction and repairs nationwide. Projects have been approved in every state. DOT economists estimate that over 39,000 job-years will be created just from the projects approved so far.

The Obama Administration is committed to getting ARRA dollars into the economy as quickly as possible in order to get the economy back on track. A group of senior officials from across the Department of Transportation, known as the Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) team is monitoring the program to make sure the money is rapidly made available and that the spending is closely monitored and transparent to the public.


posted by transport blogs @ 10:38 PM permanent link   | Post a Comment | 0 comments

Monday, April 20, 2009

Heavy vehicle charges impacted by road building programs

Significantly higher spending on major roads in recent years will result in a 3.2% increase in truck and bus registration charges.

Trucks and buses pay their fair share of road and bridge upgrades, which deliver better productivity and safety, through a fuel-based charge and state-based registration fees.

An annual adjustment considers changes in road expenditure and vehicle use to ensure trucks and buses do not pay too much, or too little, for using the road network. This fulfils a Council of Australian Government (COAG) directive to ensure ongoing cost recovery1.

The revised registration charges are scheduled to apply from July 1, 2009.
NTC has been asked by the federal Minister for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government, Anthony Albanese MP to commence a separate consultation process on the fuel-based road user charge.

A full explanation of the 2009 annual adjustment calculation, including the proposed new rate and information relied on to determine that rate has been published to support fair and transparent consultation. It is proposed that the new rate charge of 21.7 cents per litre will apply from 1 July 2009.


posted by transport blogs @ 11:27 PM permanent link   | Post a Comment | 0 comments

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Improving road safety in developing nations

National Transport Commission (NTC) Deputy Chairman Dr Ian Johnston AM has been appointed to the World Bank's Global Road Safety Facility (GRSF) Core Advisory Group (CAG), which provides independent advice on best practice road safety initiatives for developing nations.

"This World Bank initiative plays a valuable role in reducing road deaths and injuries in low and middle-income countries," said NTC Chairman Greg Martin.

"Dr Johnston's appointment reflects his expertise and achievements and Australia's status as one of the world's leaders in improving road safety."

Launched in late 2005, the World Bank's Global Road Safety Facility (GRSF) provides funding and technical assistance to help low and middle-income countries implement cost-effective road safety programs.Dr Johnston has over 30 years experience in transport safety, including roles as Director of Monash University Accident Research Centre, Managing Director of ARRB Transport Research and Director-Road Safety for the Victorian Government.


posted by transport blogs @ 10:54 PM permanent link   | Post a Comment | 0 comments

Friday, April 3, 2009

Pink number plates launched to support McGrath Foundation

Pink number platesOn Friday 3rd April 2009, Minister for Roads Michael Daley handed Chairman of the McGrath Foundation and cricketing legend, Glenn McGrath, the state’s first hot pink number plates as part of a campaign to raise money for women diagnosed with breast cancer.

Glenn McGrath became the first person in NSW to fit customised hot pink plates to his vehicle today after his Foundation partnered with the RTA to create the new range.

"This is a great joint initiative that will make a real difference to women diagnosed with breast cancer with a portion of proceeds from the first six months of sales donated to the McGrath Foundation," Mr Daley said.

"The money raised will help fund the important work of McGrath Breast Care Nurses throughout NSW as well as increase breast awareness among young women.
Mr McGrath said he was thrilled to be the first motorist in NSW to fit his new pink number plates to his iconic Hummer.

"I congratulate the RTA for taking a positive step to raise breast awareness and for its support of the McGrath Foundation," Mr McGrath said.

"My licence plate identifies who I am, so I'm proud to have the hot pink plates on my Hummer - that way, there’s no question I support the McGrath Foundation and its aims.

"I'm hoping other people will also take the opportunity to invest in pink plates not only to raise funds for the McGrath Foundation but also as a continual reminder that all young women should be breast aware," he said.

Minister for Roads Michael Daley said the RTA will be donating $15 to the McGrath Foundation from each set of customised pink plates sold from 8th April until 31st October 2009.

"But for anyone who purchases a set of handmade hot pink prestige plates, the RTA will increase the donation to $50 per plate," Mr Daley said.

"This is an important cause so I'd encourage motorists to get onboard and personalise their vehicles with a touch of pink.

"You can check out the new range at your local RTA branch or online at – the pink plates come in an easy one-off payment and are yours for life," he said.

There are four new pink plates available:

  • Prestige - hand-made, premium, hot pink plate with white characters
  • Hot pink - hot pink plate with white characters
  • Lipstick pink - pale pink plate with black characters
  • White - white background with hot pink characters

Pink plates can be ordered from Wednesday 8th April 2009 at your local RTA motor registry.

About the McGrath Foundation

The McGrath Foundation was co-founded by Jane and Glenn McGrath after Jane's initial recovery from breast cancer. The McGrath Foundation aims to raise money to place McGrath Breast Care Nurses in rural and regional Australia as well as educating young women to be 'breast aware'.

For more information visit here



posted by transport blogs @ 11:17 PM permanent link   | Post a Comment | 0 comments




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