Conservative Assembly Members scupper attempt to boost cycling budget by £41 million
The London Assembly divided on party lines today as all nine Conservative Assembly Members voted against an amendment that would have seen an extra £41 million of the £7 billion Transport for London budget allocated to cycling in 2013-14.
The vote was lost despite Assembly Members receiving over 30,000 emails in support of the amendment from London Cycling Campaign supporters*.
However, despite voting against the reallocation of the 2013-14 TfL budget, the Conservative group said it wouldn't necessarily oppose increases in cycling expenditure in future budgets.
LCC Chief Executive Ashok Sinha said, "We offer our profound thanks to the thousands of Londoners who took the time to write to their Assembly Members calling for a fair deal for cycling in next year's transport budget.
"Extra funds are desperately needed to deliver the Mayor's own Better Junctions programme because there's a real danger that under current funding proposals this programme will fail to make cycling significantly safer or to deliver Boris Johnsons's Love London, Go Dutch promises to the electorate."
The defeated budget amendment called for a reallocation of Transport for London spending to take cycling expenditure up to 2% of the total transport budget, matching the proportion of journeys made by bicycle in London.
The amendment was put forward by Jenny Jones of the Green Party, and supported by the Labour, Liberal Democrat and Green groups in the London Assembly.
The amendment would have brought spending on cycling into line with recommendations from the all-party London Assembly Transport Committee published last year, taking total expenditure for 2013-14 to £145 million.
Because of the Conservative opposition, the amendment failed to gain the two-thirds majority needed to amend Mayor Boris Johnson's budget.