This article originally appeared at Liberal Democrat Voice.
Last week Brian Paddick and I launched a fairer fares package ahead of this year’s London Mayoral and Assembly elections.
Boris Johnson has been Mayor of London since 2008. In just four years he has increased the cheapest bus fare from 90p to £1.35 – and he had planned to raise fares even further until the Coalition Government stepped in and helped limit the rise. As well as bus fares, the cost of travelling on the Tube, the Docklands Light Railway, the Croydon Tramlink and the London Overground have all soared under Mr Johnson’s mayoralty.
Of course there is the argument that investment in public transport has to be paid for by someone, and surely passengers have to pay their fair share? There is of course an element of truth in that. Yet accepting that there is still a need for investment to continue in the tube network, does that let Mayor Johnson off the hook? Of course not. There are realistic alternatives to his fare policies.