Select Committee on Environment, Transport and Regional Affairs Second Special Report


APPENDIX B

COMMISSION FOR INTEGRATED TRANSPORT RESPONSE TO THE ENVIRONMENT, TRANSPORT AND REGIONAL AFFAIRS COMMITTEE REPORT ON THE WORK OF THE COMMISSION FOR INTEGRATED TRANSPORT

Recommendation

(5) We recommend that a system be introduced immediately to enable the Government to reply formally to the Commission's reports. The Government should set itself a target of publishing its response within two months of a report being issued by the Commission.

CfIT response

CfIT welcomes this recommendation and agrees that the Government should respond within tow months to formally submitted reports. However, CfIT values the ability to respond to requests for advice on a wide range of policy developments and would not wish for Government to feel constrained in seeking ad hoc advice by the need always to respond formally within two months. Any resulting policy statements should, however, set out how CfIT's advice has been taken into account.

Recommendation

(6) We recommend that the Commission introduce a properly structured programme of meetings with the devolved bodies in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. As well as assisting in the provision of advice to those bodies, regular contact with allow the Commission to monitor more closely progress towards achieving integrated transport policy objectives in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

CfIT response

CfIT's remit is to provide independent advice to the UK Government.

In discharging its remit there would, however, be benefits to all parties in more formal, regular meetings between CfIT and the devolved administrations. CfIT will discuss with the Scottish Executive and the Welsh and Northern Ireland Assemblies whether and how these more formal links can be developed and maintained.

Recommendation

(7) The Commission should submit a paper containing its views on the development of the national rail network and its investment needs to the Government or directly to the sSRA. This should be followed by regular meeting between the Commission and the Authority to discuss progress with these issues and to consider other matters as they arise.

CfIT response

The Strategic Rail Authority is currently preparing its rail investment agenda, which will be published soon. The Chair of CfIT is a member of the SRA and the Chairman of the SRA is a member of the Commission. In discharging these duties, they have ensured that the evolving rail strategy takes account of the wider role that the rail network will play in delivering the integrated transport policy.

CfIT will, as part of its remit to monitor the progress against the objectives of the 10 Year Plan, report on the contribution that development of the rail network and service enhancements are playing in achieving the objectives and outcomes set out in the plan. CfIT will, as necessary, advise Government on further rail policy measures that would help to secure the 10 Year Plan objectives.

Recommendation

(8) Ensuring the CfIT's views are taken into account by other authorities, however, cannot be left to ad hoc meetings or simply by making the Commission's Chairman a member of various boards and other bodies. The Commissions's relations with those other organisations charged with delivering the objective of an integrated transport system should be formalised.

CfIT response

The Commission has a Contacts Programme involving members in meeting a wide range of organisations involved in integrated transport. Further, in drawing up its advice to Government, CfIT also consults widely and takes account of a diverse range of views. The Commission publicises its formal advice widely and expects that, once accepted by Government, its advice would be disseminated as necessary and taken into account by those organisations charged with delivering an integrated transport system.


 
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