Transport for London (TfL) said it was considering a draft government proposal for a long-term funding arrangement.
TfL has struck a series of short-term emergency funding deals since falling into financial difficulty during the pandemic.
Andy Byford, London’s transport commissioner, said the long-term funding – if agreed – would provide much-needed certainty to people in the nation’s capital.
He said: “Since London has been through the darkest times of the pandemic, we have argued to the government that there can be no recovery in the UK without a recovery in London and that there cannot be having recovery in London without a properly funded transport network.
“We are grateful for the support we have received so far and maintain that we have met all the conditions set by the government as we worked to conclude a multi-year funding settlement which would give certainty to London and the tens of thousands of jobs across the country that are directly linked to TfL.
“All other major transport systems around the world receive central government funding, and London needs the same if it is to have a transport network that can continue to support homes, jobs, opportunities and Economic Growth. The importance of a properly funded transport network, which can offer a viable alternative to car use and can play its part in responding to the climate emergency, has been underlined again in recent days.
“We have received this evening (July 22, 2022) a draft proposal from the government, which we are now examining in detail. No agreement has yet been reached and we need to ensure that the proposal is fair and that the conditions are realistic and deliverable. We will respond to the government as soon as possible.
Announcing the proposal on Twitter, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: ‘Although @MayorofLondon failed to provide the information required for the @TfL funding extensions, I have put a long-term settlement on the table to ensure services are supported and £3.6bn of capital projects take place by 2024.
“The ball is now firmly in the mayor’s court.”
London Mayor Sadiq Khan welcomed the proposal but said it was “long overdue”.
He said in a statement: “Late Friday evening, TfL finally received a proposal for a government funding settlement. It was long overdue – and the inexcusable delay has forced TfL to plan cuts.
“While the sight of this offer is welcome, we will now need to examine the offer in detail to understand the impact of this offer on Londoners and the wider economy. It is in no one’s interest to have terms that could harm TfL, unfairly punish Londoners or our capital’s economy.
“TfL only needs financial support from the government because he and Londoners have followed government advice, which has had a devastating impact on TfL’s finances. TfL needs a sustainable funding deal that avoids the need for painful cuts to London’s transport network.
“Unless this deal delivers fair and sustainable funding for our capital, which brings a net £36bn to the rest of the country, there will be devastating cuts to bus and tube services, harming both the economic recovery of London and the nation.”