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Forde accuses PDs of vetoing Dublin Bus expansion

26 June, 2006

Dublin City Councillor Killian Forde has reacted with disbelief over weekend reports that the provision of desperately needed extra buses for the Dublin Bus Fleet was to be delayed further. He accused the PDs of operating a veto at the cabinet table, preventing the expansion of Dublin Bus, something which is having a detrimental impact on northside commuters.

Councillor Forde said

"Reports over the weekend suggest that there is going to be yet another delay in the provision of extra buses for Dublin Bus. The National Development Plan contained a commitment to provide funds for more than 300 new buses ˆ but only a fraction of these have been provided. They have still to provide funding for 170 buses. These buses have been ordered and their routes chosen. Many of these routes, new and existing are in North Dublin.

"It is a disgrace that the Fianna Fáil/Progressive Democrat Coalition, who signed off on the NDP, is still refusing to honour its own commitments. Dublin Bus was told that once they carried out a route review they would receive the money for the new buses. This was done months ago and still no money has been released. I believe that the PDs are operating a veto at the cabinet table. In the face of overwhelming global evidence to the contrary the PD flat earthers still insist that bus privatisation will be the panacea to public transport provision in Dublin.

"Early experiments in private bus operators running their own routes failed miserably in North Dublin. In 2001 Aer Dart was given an attractive branded route, a dedicated bus lane and a dig out by the Government in their PR. Yet after only four years they pulled out of the route. In meetings I had with Dublin Bus they stated they would be delighted to take on the route but due the lack of buses could not operate it."

Forde added that "The PD veto on these extra buses must end. Their views are totally unrepresentative. In my own area in the last local election they received a paltry 2.5% vote, yet they are preventing the expansion of the Dublin Bus network in my area. This is having a detrimental impact on the planning of and the commuting habits of the new and future residents of the 40,000 people North fringe town."ENDS

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