Letters, Thursday, October 30, 2014

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Scheme is not the road to more buses

I HOPE nobody expects Quality Contracts to lead to better bus services.

 I challenge anyone to show there would be one extra bus on our roads as a consequence.

 Better bus services would be delivered more quickly by taking-up the Quality Partnership offer of the bus companies.

 That the all-Labour North East Combined Authority has decided not to do so shows the issue is really one of control. Labour wants local politicians to run bus services.

 There will be no more buses in the evenings or on Sundays because there aren’t sufficient passengers wanting to travel then to cover the costs of such services.

 Nexus already has the legal powers to “secure” (ie subsidise) such bus services but uses them sparingly.

 Labour plans to spend money that would be better used running buses on more staff for Nexus planning bus services – and painting all the buses red.

 Labour attacks Stagecoach for its profits, ignoring the fact its fares are the lowest in Tyne and Wear, have been frozen this year, and are used to fund investment in new buses.

 Without profit there would be no business – or jobs. (How long would Nissan and its suppliers last without profits?)

 What Quality Contracts will also do is transfer the financial risk for running services from the bus companies to the local council taxpayer. Get it wrong and council taxes go through the roof.

 London bus services are subsidised by hundreds of millions of pounds – we simply can’t afford that.

Coun Peter Wood

Welcome plans

ON behalf of the residents of Chillingham House Sheltered Housing, we are delighted to hear about the change to the Quality Contract Scheme “which will transform the way bus services are run on Wearside”. In the past we have pressed the bus companies to provide transport so we can access the town and the Wheatsheaf but to no avail.

 It is also difficult for visitors to access the National Glass Centre. Hopefully the new plans will benefit access to this unique experience and also benefit residents in this area.

Residents of Chillingham House, Roker

Rubbish campaign

WE are constantly told there is too much going into landfill and that it is cheaper and environmentally friendly to recycle. So why are some people opting out of recycling?

 Wheelie bins with no identification are left out in back streets, posing various risks including fire.

 It costs £1,970 when a bin is set on fire.

 Revellers use these bins to disturb the peace in the early hours, this can awaken people who are asleep and who then find it difficult or impossible to sleep for the rest of the night.

 Now that the political parties are preparing for next year’s elections, what do they say about these problems?

 Can they mention these problems and the solutions they have in mind on the leaflets that will be coming through the letter box?

John Watson