Friday, 23 April 2010

DfT preparing to cut services?

This from a Mr Taylor...

Is DfT trying to sneak in plans to cut service levels during the life of franchises?

And hand back money as a reward to the lucky TOC at the same time?!

This from p28 of DfT's Future of Franchising document:

5.14 It will be important, especially in the case of longer franchises, to ensure that the Department’s original specification can be amended during the franchise term. We therefore want to ensure that operators have an incentive to propose changes to service levels to reflect levels of use. The Department is therefore considering amending the current franchise agreement so that’ where operators propose sensible measures to reduce costs during their franchise term’ they will be rewarded by receiving a proportion of these savings.

5.15 Under the current process there is no incentive for operators to make sensible changes to services that are no longer justified, since any savings are returned entirely to Government. This in turn drives sub-optimal decision making. It will be important that any such changes proposed by the operator are justified, and the Department will always consider such changes.

Tut tut tut.

Still, it might mean there is hope for London Midland and CrossCountry after all.

UPDATE: This from @SWLines, via Twitter...

I am reminded of "DfT do not renegotiate franchises" they mean except when it is convenient for them, then? :)