25 July 2011
Transport and Technical Services (TTS) believes an audit into the current bus contract by the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) will be a useful reference document for the new bus contract which is currently starting its tendering process.
While bus passenger numbers have been rising, customer satisfaction levels are high and continuing improvements to the service are being made, TTS acknowledges that the experience it has gained in managing this current contract has been invaluable and will help formulate a better structure for the management of the next one.
The CAG report states that the management of these types of contract “is a developing skill both within the Island and elsewhere” and that the purpose of the review was to assess the success with which the States has managed bus contracts.
At the end of 2010 the Sustainable Transport Policy (STP) was approved by the States and this gives clear direction and targets for what TTS want to achieve in future and how increasing bus use is an integral part of its plans. TTS is devoting more time than was previously possible and taking specialist advice to ensure that the new contract will not only achieve the objectives of the STP but will have an appropriate management system capable of delivering the changes required. This process is already underway.
Minister for Transport and Technical Services, Connétable Mike Jackson, said: “We have been in the process of putting together a new bus contract for some time now and in doing so, we obviously analysed the current contract in detail with a team who are specialists in transport contracts. There is therefore little to surprise us in the CAG’s report as we were very much aware of what needed to be covered in the new contract. However, it is very useful to have another impartial view, reinforcing our opinions of what needs to be done.”