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Powers for councils to impose workplace car park and road-use charging and enforce higher standards from bus operat...
Powers for councils to impose workplace car park and road-use charging and enforce higher standards from bus operators will be made available to councils under the Transport Bill.

The DETR said councils will have the chance to design transport schemes which suited their particular needs, subject to the approval of the secretary of state.

Workplace parking and road user charging to discouraging traffic in towns and cities will be options.

Councils will also have robust powers to require higher standards from bus operators. There will be two strands, Quality Partnerships and Quality Contracts.

Quality Partnerships, which are already running on a voluntary basis, will be put on a statutory footing. Councils will be able to require service standards such as joint ticketing from different operators, or an agreement that the operator will buy new buses in return for bus priority measures.

Quality Contracts will allow councils to draw up contract specifications for bus services and let them after a competitive tender.

The Local Government Association welcomed the legislation. LGA transport chair Mark Dowd said: 'The introduction of levy charges will give local authorities a real chance to tackle pollution from work-based care journeys and, we hope, encourage people to take a longer-term view of their transport habits.'

But he wanted to see councils play an even bigger role in local transport issues.

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