Ken Livingstone ramped up his campaign to return to City Hall today by promising to save Londoners £800 in fares over the next four years.
Labour’s 2012 Mayoral candidate spent the morning speaking to Victoria line passengers about his ‘Fare Deal’ campaign which would see fares cut by 5% next year and rise only by inflation in future years.
Livingstone said “‘under my Fare Deal, Londoners would effectively stop paying their annual fares costs by this week in November.”
Since coming to office in 2008, Mayor Boris Johnson has implemented a series of above inflation fares increases. From January 2012 average fares will increase by 7%.
City Hall claims Livingstone’s proposed freeze would translate into an £800m cut in Transport for London’s investment budget.
However Livingstone insists he can cut fares “without touching either future investment budgets, reserves, or existing operating budgets”.
The former Mayor recently told this site: “It’s very tempting to say ‘Boris has put fares up by 7%, I’ll cut them 7% in October’ but we’re saying 5% because when we plough through the budget and we’d gone for 7% we might have found in that final year there would be a deficit and I’m not prepared to take that risk.
“And we haven’t allowed for any extra ridership to reduce fares, so if anything they’ll still be more of a surplus than we require.”