TSSA and RMT to ballot members as transport commissioner warns of £1bn funding reduction

Unions are threatening to strike as Transport for London faces up to huge budget cuts.

The Transport Salaried Staffs Association has obtained a memo from transport commissioner Peter Hendy to TfL staff warning of “very significant effects” on its budget.

In the memo, Hendy said: “All departments affected, including the Department for Transport which provides some £3bn a year of our funding, have now submitted their projected cuts to the Treasury based on these scenarios [25% and 40% up to 2014/15]. Discussions between departments and the Treasury will continue over the summer, before the chancellor makes his announcement on 20 October about where the cuts will actually fall.

“Notwithstanding the work we have been undertaking to mitigate the impact, we are faced with having to sustain a considerable reduction in our funding.”

TSSA general secretary Gerry Doherty said: “If TfL lose anything like £1bn from its budget, the ticket office cuts will just be the tip of the iceberg. We could be looking at two or three times that amount because TfL have already halted all capital spending.”

The TSSA and the Rail Maritime and Transport union are balloting their members on industrial action over the ticket office job losses and Mr Doherty warned that strike ballots would be called to halt any new threat to jobs in the autumn.

A TfL spokesman said: “As our £5bn savings programme demonstrates, we are also fully committed to delivering improved value for money for the fare-payer and taxpayer. The review will be undertaken by a team drawn from TfL staff, not consultants, reporting to the commissioner and will take some months to complete.”