The latest estimate for the cost of under 18 free travel is £55 million. Note how the Mayor shamelessly tries to spin this as a redistribution benefit.
Andrew Pelling: What is the latest lost revenue estimate for both the under 18 and under 16 free bus pass scheme?
Ken Livingstone: Free bus travel for the under 16s is estimated to have reduced bus fares revenue by around £35m pa.
Free bus travel for 16/17s in full time education is expected to reduce bus fares revenue by around £20m in a full year.
Put another way, the two schemes are delivering benefits to hard pressed families across London worth over £50m per annum.
These savings should make it less of a struggle for poorer families to fund the final two years of secondary education for their children; and, it is hoped, will encourage more children from poorer homes to stay on at school.
Following the introduction of the two free schemes, bus fares revenue in 2007 is expected to be in excess of £1billion.
Of course the high revenue probably has more to do with inflation busting fare increases over three years, than with giving away free tickets to some groups.