Inner West Bus Networks: Flogged, Not Fixed

Friday, May 19, 2017 | Jamie Parker, Jenny Leong

Reacting to the recent privatisation of the Inner West sector 6 bus lines, Jamie Parker, MP for Balmain, said:

"Sydney deserves world class public transport, and the bus system is a critical part of our public transport network.

The answer to improving bus services is not for the government to simply to wash their hands of the matter and sell them off.

We need to see a genuine commitment to improving these public transport services with proper investment in making sure the people of the Inner West can get where they need to go in the most efficient way possible.

For years, bus drivers have consistently been asking Transport for NSW for more suitable running times and timetables due to the major infrastructure works such as light rail and road constructions delaying their routes. Each time they were refused.

The government has been designing these services to fail so that when the service quality inevitably went down, they had an excuse to privatise. If the new private operators are given the extra running times that were refused to the public bus services, the government can claim the credit for privatising these routes.

This will pave the way to subject yet more of our public transport to the drive for profit, while putting huge pressure on the price of fares and continuation of 'less profitable' routes."

Jenny Leong, MP for Newtown, said:

"When it comes to privatisation this Government cannot be trusted.

"The Minister is relying on a total number of complaints in the inner west to justify this latest sell off - and comparison with complaints on private network as 'evidence' that this is the solution, but this logic is so flawed. What are the complaints about? What are the percentage of complaints compared to the high level of usage? What level of resourcing?"

"The failure to seriously deal with Sydney's congestion problems - rather than pumping billions after billions in to polluting tollroads - has an impact on how quickly our buses can get us from A to B. The answer isn't privatisation, it's more investment in public transport solutions."

"The NSW Government should fix our bus services, not just flog them off."

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