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24th CfIT Plenary Meeting - 13 March 2003

Papers:

Agenda

1: 9.30 Minutes of the Last Meeting and Matters Arising

2: 9.45 Ten Year Plan - Second Assessment Report

10.45 - Coffee

3: 11.00 Year Five Work Programme

4: 12.00 Communities Plan

5: 12.30 Freedom of Information & Scientific Code of Practice

The following items will be taken as read:

6: CfIT Visit to Munich

7: Plenary Programme

8: Programme Expenditure

9: CfIT Website

1.00 - Lunch

Minutes

Present:

Professor David Begg; Sir Trevor Chinn; Lawrence Christensen; Stewart Francis; Mike Hodgkinson; Stephen Joseph; Helen Holland; David Leeder; Lilli Matson; Tim Matthews; Sir Roy McNulty; Bill Morris; Mike Parker; Michael Roberts; Neil Scales; Baroness Ros Scott; Jane Wilmot.
Andy Braithwaite; Steve Guyon; John Rider; Richard Mace.
Geoff Copley; John Vincent.

Apologies for absence

Apologies were received from Richard Bowker.

1. Minutes of the Last Meeting and Matters Arising

1.1 The minutes of the 14 January meeting were agreed as circulated. The Chair gave an update on the following points under matters arising:

  1. Aviation - Surface Access Response
    The surface access response had been finalised and would be submitted to Ministers shortly. Publication was scheduled for April.
  2. Local Authority Survey
    The final report of the survey was published on the CfIT website, with a press release on 10 March. The majority of journalists had covered the story accurately, and the survey received good coverage with a page lead in the Business as well as reports on BBC radio bulletins and website. The Observer's coverage appeared inconsistent with the press briefing, the Chair has written to the editor about this.
  3. Multi Modal Study Advice
    The MMS advice would be published with a press statement on 17 March. The report recommends an early Government decision on congestion charging post 2011.
    The Chair felt it was important that the SofS had the opportunity to hear the views of CfIT members directly and it was agreed to invite him to the next London plenary meeting.
  4. Action: Secretariat to invite the Secretary of State to the July plenary.

  5. Public Subsidy for the Bus Industry
    The Chair had met with Jack Jones from the T&G Retired Members' Association and representatives of other pensioner groups to discuss CfIT's recommendation on limiting OAP concessionary fares to the 50% statutory minimum and spreading concessions to other, socially excluded groups. The Chair offered Jack Jones the opportunity to put the pensioners' case at the next available CfIT plenary (July) and suggested that it might be useful to brief CfIT members individually in the interim.
    Members felt that many of the recommendations, which pointed towards a more positive vision for the bus industry, had been overlooked by the media as a result of the focus on concessions. The forthcoming Government announcement on the outcome of their own bus subsidy review would provide CfIT with an opportunity to restate these recommendations in a press release.
    DPTAC were due to examine the issue of concessionary fares later this year. The study would examine the principles of concessionary fares and the advantages for disabled people.
  6. Action: Secretariat to invite Jack Jones to the July plenary.

2. CfIT Second Assessment Report on the 10YP

2.1 Publication was scheduled for mid to late May (now planned for early June). The general consensus was that CfIT should focus on providing positive input to the Government review and roll forward of the plan. It would be important to get the right balance to move the transport agenda forward in a way that would help to gain public support.

2.2 The Chair was pleased with the tone and content of the draft technical report produced by Faber Maunsell and he invited comments from CfIT members.

2.3 The following was agreed by members:

2.4 The second assessment report should be robust and objective. It should focus on the further policies that needed to be considered in rolling forward and reviewing the 10 Year Plan. The aim would be to ensure clear improvements to travellers using all modes, for business, residents and communities. There was agreement around the table that the 10 Year Plan was failing in some areas to meet its targets and that CfIT's assessment report should recognise this (as the Government's Progress Report had acknowledged).

2.5 The report should seek to influence the forthcoming Government Plan review. It would provide advice to Government on how the transport agenda should be progressed. The report should highlight ways of progressing the transport agenda so as to gain public support and help the Government review of the 10 Year Plan, particularly on sensitive issues such as demand management. CfIT should use the report as an opportunity to help Government refresh its own thinking.

2.6 Members agreed that the final version of the CfIT report would be printed as a full colour document with the aim to publish in mid to late May. The Secretary invited members to email any further comments. A further draft would then be circulated to members.

Actions:
Members to send any further comments via email.
Chair/Vice Chair/Secretariat to meet with Faber Maunsell.
Second draft to members by the end of April.
Secretariat to arrange for printing of the final report.
Publication now aimed for early June.

3. Year 5 Work Programme

3.1 The 2003/04 programme covered three main themes:

  1. Assessing the effectiveness of the delivery agencies;
  2. Advising on the review of the 10 year plan;
  3. Developing a longer term vision for UK transport policy.

3.2 The Chair welcomed comments from members on the draft programme:

Action: Secretariat to circulate phase one of the MF road safety study for agreement by CfIT members in May.

3.3 Members agreed that it was a critical period for CfIT to influence Government policy, with the imminent Plan review by the Government and the comprehensive spending review. It was suggested that projects which did not tie into this process should be given a lower priority.

3.4 It was agreed that the table of projects in the draft programme would be restructured. Individual projects would be grouped under the three main themes. The programme would also need to tie in with CfIT's second assessment report. The report would then be re-circulated to CfIT members and agreed via correspondence.

Action: Year 5 Work Programme to be amended and re-circulated to CfIT members for agreement via correspondence.

4. ODPM Communities Plan

4.1 CfIT welcomed the Action Plan for Sustainable Communities with its emphasis on high-density development on brownfield sites with public transport links at the core. Delivering the plan would be an important test of joined up government.

4.2 The important area for CfIT would be to examine the issue of capturing land value gain and this would be picked up in the year 5 work programme in the appraisal and modelling review. Members expressed concern that the current appraisal process did not allow decision makers access to sufficient information to understand the actual impacts (behavioural changes, based on capture of time savings, that drive economic, environmental and social outcomes) of investment options.

5. Freedom of Information Act and Code of Practice for Scientific Bodies

5.1 Members agreed the strategy outlined in the paper, which would enable CfIT to comply with the Freedom of Information Act and the Code of Practice for Scientific Advisory Committees. Although the Secretariat would complete the necessary actions for compliance, members needed to be aware of the requirements of both the Freedom of Information Act and the Scientific Code, particularly when signing-off CfIT reports. In response to a question the Secretariat stated that, in the unlikely event of a breach of the regulations, neither the FOI Act nor the Scientific Code was thought to impose financial penalties on CfIT members. This would be checked and Members advised.

Action: Secretariat to prepare guidance for members on the financial consequences of membership.

6. Papers

6.1 The following papers were noted and approved:

7. Any Other Business

7.1 Stephen Joseph had attended a scoping meeting for the DfT 'Synergies' project, which aimed to develop small-scale local transport projects. The project was currently at a very early stage, but was likely to cover workplace and school travel plans, video conferencing, bus initiatives, walking and cycling facilities and 20mph zones, used in a concerted way in several areas-to assess the effectiveness of such an approach.

7.2 Transport 2000 had recently published a guide on best practice in public transport in the UK and other European countries entitled "At the Leading Edge".

Action: Secretariat to circulate copies of the T2000 report.

Action: CfIT press notices to be copied to CfIT members at least 3 days prior to publication.

7.3 CfIT members were concerned by a recent announcement by the ODPM to remove the requirement to produce local transport plans for those authorities performing well across all service sectors - this was seen as being against 'joined up' Government. Members felt strongly that LTPs should remain an integral part of the planning process and that they should continue to be produced by all authorities.

Action: Chair to write to DPM regarding the requirement to produce LTPs.

Date of Next Meeting

The next plenary meeting would be on 14 and 15 May in London. CfIT's visit to Munich had been postponed until November.