England

Transport authority Centro cuts workforce by a quarter

John McNicholas standing by a train
Image caption The chairman of Centro, John McNicholas, announced 89 redundancies

A quarter of the workforce is to be cut at transport authority Centro as part of budget savings of £7m.

Staff numbers will be reduced by 89, with councillors voting to slash jobs rather than services.

Proposals rejected in February included ending half price travel for children and free tram and train travel for concessionary pass holders.

Centro is funded by seven councils in the West Midlands.

It is responsible for public transport in Birmingham, Coventry, Dudley, Sandwell, Solihull, Walsall and Wolverhampton.

Centro chairman John McNicholas, who said the job losses would come from backroom staff, blamed the measure on "unprecedented cuts being imposed on local government".

The redundancies will save £3m, and a further saving of £4m will be made by reducing the Ring and Ride grant, as well as "the streamlining of bus station and infrastructure maintenance," said Mr McNicholas.

He added: "Cushioning the effect on front-line services means the impact on our staff will be harder".

The decisions came after 8,000 people responded to a public consultation on the proposals.

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