Local authorities in London say they will need to find a further £22m of funding for the Freedom Pass following news of a further fares increase.
Last week Mayor Boris Johnson confirmed he would stick to his fares increase formula of RPI + 2%, a move which would increase average fares by 7% from January 2012.
London Councils, the body which represents local authorities in the capital, says the fares hike means London boroughs will have to pay an extra £22million towards the Freedom Pass scheme next year.
Of the Pass’s £316.415 million expected runnings costs in the next financial year, £296.942 million will be paid by the boroughs while the Mayor will contribute just £19.473 million.
Chair of London Councils’ Transport and Environment Committee Councillor Catherine West said: “We are calling on the Mayor to minimise the level of the increased cost to the Freedom Pass.
“We are very concerned about the impact of Transport for London’s fare increases on Londoners whose household budgets are already counting the cost of these tough economic times.”
A TfL spokesperson said it was “currently discussing” the Freedom Pass settlement with London Councils but insisted the likely £297m cost “represents excellent value for money after the Mayor extended the acceptance of the Freedom Pass to 24 hours a day for the one million or so Londoners who use it, at no cost to London Councils.”