Time to look again at transport problems, says Mark Spencer MP

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Mark Spencer, MP for Sherwood, entered the debate on increasingly high train fares this week, discussing the fairness of expecting Sherwood’s largely bus and car based commuters to support national rail development and increased usage.

Mark said in the debate: “Public transport provision in my constituency is shockingly poor, and with the exception of the town of Hucknall, railway provision is pretty much non-existent.

“A taxpayer in Ollerton has to get in their car, for which they have paid road tax, and fund their journey by paying for petrol and the tax on it. They drive to the city of Nottingham and pay the workplace parking levy introduced by the Labour-controlled city council to earn their wage to pay taxes to support a banker in Surrey by cheapening his journey into the City of London. To someone working in Sherwood and earning twenty thousand quid, that does not seem acceptable.”

Mark argued that among a package of measures, ensuring rail fares rise slowly but also demanding better value for money in terms of efficiency is vital: “It is not tolerable or acceptable to my hard-working, tax-paying constituents that they have to keep dipping their hand in their pocket only for that money to be wasted rather than spent in the most efficient possible manner... They cannot keep paying indefinitely without efficiency savings.”

Mark said “The answer to the problem of rail fares is not black and white and we have yet to establish a fair balance between investing collectively in infrastructure development, which will benefit the whole country, and bashing taxpayers like those in Sherwood to keep someone else’s season ticket down. What is clear though, is that resolving this problem must be a priority for the Coalition”