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