§ Mr. Sillars
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will make a statement on the action he has taken to date to assist in preserving bus services to rural communities.
§ Mr. Gordon Campbell
Under Section 34 of the Transport Act 1968 Government grant at the rate of 50 per cent. is available to local authorities which incur expenditure for the provision, improvement or continuance of rural bus services. Government assistance under the Act is at present provided in support of bus services in 22 county areas of Scotland. The total amount of such assist-46W ance in the financial year 1972–73 was £281,401.
In addition, the local authorities' share of the cost of subsidising services is taken into account in the calculation of rate support grant.