Mark King has put the following information on Facebook:
It is with regret that i can confirm that bus operator Local Link is withdrawing from the fare stage element of their business and that we are in receipt of their route de-registration forms.
The services affected are numbers 25, 64, 65, 108/109, 62, 61/60, 67, 67A, 67B, the last day of operation of these services will be the 1st April 2017. In addition, all of the Sainsbury’s services.
The operator of Local Link has taken the decision to close parts of his businesses and this will have the affect of terminating a number of bus routes across Torbay.
This is an operational decision for the business in question and not a matter which the Council has any control over. The council continues to reimburse operators for concessionary fares, against national criteria, and this will continue for all eligible routes.
Where an operator advises the Department for Transport that they wish to cease operating a route, then the Council can offer these routes to other operators. This will occur over the coming weeks, and until this process is concluded, we are unable to confirm the future of the current routes operated by Local Link.
The funding calculations for bus operators accepting English National Concessionary Travel passes are regularly reviewed to ensure bus operators are ‘no better, nor worse off’, for providing the scheme. These calculations are made based using Government legislation and guidance and are strictly regulated. A number of factors affect the reimbursement rate an operator is due, so from time to time, this will result in changes to the reimbursement rate an operator will receive.