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Author Topic: Peers call for end of free bus passes for over 65s  (Read 504 times)
grahame
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« on: April 25, 2019, 09:36:07 am »

From The BBC

Quote
Free TV licences, winter fuel payments and other "outdated" age-related benefits should be scrapped, a group of peers has said, with the money spent on housing and training for young people.

The Committee on Intergenerational Fairness said subsidising licences for over-75s were no longer justified given improvements in pensioners' incomes.

It also called for free bus passes for the over-65s to be ended.

When did you last see a peer on a bus?
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Lee
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« Reply #1 on: April 25, 2019, 09:51:10 am »

From The BBC

Quote
Free TV licences, winter fuel payments and other "outdated" age-related benefits should be scrapped, a group of peers has said, with the money spent on housing and training for young people.

The Committee on Intergenerational Fairness said subsidising licences for over-75s were no longer justified given improvements in pensioners' incomes.

It also called for free bus passes for the over-65s to be ended.

When did you last see a peer on a bus?

On a 2016 visit to Martson Marston Vale...
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LiskeardRich
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« Reply #2 on: April 25, 2019, 10:21:23 am »

As a driver, I know of many elderly passengers who use their pass as their only social interaction most weeks. They get on and chat to anyone they can. Their state pension doesn’t afford them paid for social events!
Social exclusion is reduced thanks to the pass.
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ray951
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« Reply #3 on: April 25, 2019, 11:00:44 am »

From The BBC

Quote
Free TV licences, winter fuel payments and other "outdated" age-related benefits should be scrapped, a group of peers has said, with the money spent on housing and training for young people.

The Committee on Intergenerational Fairness said subsidising licences for over-75s were no longer justified given improvements in pensioners' incomes.

It also called for free bus passes for the over-65s to be ended.

When did you last see a peer on a bus?

I wouldn't call for the end of free bus passes for the over-65's, but I have never understood the logic of
giving over-65's, who all have an income, a free bus pass while children, who don't have an income, have to pay (outside of London).


Maybe if children were given the vote then this would change.
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martyjon
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« Reply #4 on: April 25, 2019, 11:20:45 am »

All right for them creaming off £600 a day taxpayers money just for showing their face and then some of those faces are shown with shuttered eyelids.
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Red Squirrel
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« Reply #5 on: April 25, 2019, 11:21:33 am »

65? That'd be nice! I have to wait until I'm 66, and Mrs Squirrel will be 67...
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chuffed
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« Reply #6 on: April 25, 2019, 12:57:54 pm »

I have been in touch with Lord True, chair of the committee, and he has explained that it is not wholesale abolition of these perks, but more  a 5 year delay in their introduction from 67 to 72. He makes the point that with increasing life expectancy, the fit 72 year old today is more like the unfit 62 year old of yesteryear. He also made the point that even with the £300 a day allowance, peers are capped at £45k a year.
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CyclingSid
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« Reply #7 on: April 25, 2019, 02:33:28 pm »

Interesting election strategy for a party that has virtually no members aged below 50.
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Robin Summerhill
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« Reply #8 on: April 25, 2019, 04:51:26 pm »

Interesting election strategy for a party that has virtually no members aged below 50.

Quite. Parties who have manifesto pledges that are unpopular with large numbers of voters tend not to get elected. And the older you are, the more likely you are to vote...
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ellendune
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« Reply #9 on: April 25, 2019, 05:50:23 pm »

If you read the full article it does make a point.  It is wrong to assume that all pensioners are poor and all people of working age are rich.  If your only income is a state pension and you rent a house or flat then you are not going to have much spare money, but if you have a state pension and company pension and own you own house outright (having paid off any mortgage) you may be very well off and a large proportion of pensioners have quite high disposable income.   

Equally many young working people who are renting or paying a high mortgage do not have much money to spare. 

The report highlights this inter-generational inequality and suggest that offering free bus travel and fuel allowances etc to everyone just because they have reached a certain age is a blunt instrument. 

As for electability - I have yet to see a peer of the realm on any ballot paper I have been given.

 
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Adrian
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« Reply #10 on: April 25, 2019, 07:58:54 pm »

I wonder how many of those pensioners would stop travelling by bus, or at least travel less often?  In the middle part of the day, around where I live, I reckon that at least three quarters of bus users get concessionary travel for one reason or another, and if the over-65s all had to pay there would surely be some drastic reductions in service frequencies and routes.

Some local bus fares are nowadays so exorbitant that outside of the major cities there is little incentive for anyone who has access to a car to use the bus instead.  Am I right Luxembourg has recently gone in the other direction, making public transport free for everyone?
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ellendune
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« Reply #11 on: April 25, 2019, 08:05:37 pm »

I wonder how many of those pensioners would stop travelling by bus, or at least travel less often?  In the middle part of the day, around where I live, I reckon that at least three quarters of bus users get concessionary travel for one reason or another, and if the over-65s all had to pay there would surely be some drastic reductions in service frequencies and routes.

Some local bus fares are nowadays so exorbitant that outside of the major cities there is little incentive for anyone who has access to a car to use the bus instead.  Am I right Luxembourg has recently gone in the other direction, making public transport free for everyone?

So how about abolishing the buss pass for all pensioners, perhaps keeping it for those of all ages who have mobility issues and perhaps for those who are medically unable to drive,  and using the money saved to subsidise buses for all ages?
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Lee
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« Reply #12 on: April 25, 2019, 08:09:00 pm »

Am I right Luxembourg has recently gone in the other direction, making public transport free for everyone?

Yes - From March 2020.
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Adrian
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« Reply #13 on: April 25, 2019, 10:27:33 pm »

I wonder how many of those pensioners would stop travelling by bus, or at least travel less often?  In the middle part of the day, around where I live, I reckon that at least three quarters of bus users get concessionary travel for one reason or another, and if the over-65s all had to pay there would surely be some drastic reductions in service frequencies and routes.

Some local bus fares are nowadays so exorbitant that outside of the major cities there is little incentive for anyone who has access to a car to use the bus instead.  Am I right Luxembourg has recently gone in the other direction, making public transport free for everyone?

So how about abolishing the buss pass for all pensioners, perhaps keeping it for those of all ages who have mobility issues and perhaps for those who are medically unable to drive,  and using the money saved to subsidise buses for all ages?

I think there's a lot to be said for that.
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mjones
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« Reply #14 on: April 26, 2019, 06:52:36 am »



I wonder how many of those pensioners would stop travelling by bus, or at least travel less often?  In the middle part of the day, around where I live, I reckon that at least three quarters of bus users get concessionary travel for one reason or another, and if the over-65s all had to pay there would surely be some drastic reductions in service frequencies and routes.


Not necessarily. The bus operators have complained since the start of the free bus pass that the payment they receive is not sufficient to cover the lost revenue from those who would otherwise pay. It is  notable that bus services have been cut drastically since the introduction of the free bus pass. There are other factors involved, but this doesn't suggest that the free bus pass is helping to support services. Politicians like giving people free things,  but are less keen on paying the bill for them. If free things aren't funded properly you end up with less of them.
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