Andrew Gilligan is fast becoming my hero but he might have given me some credit for this story.
As it happens I know that he reads the blog so there is a good chance he saw it here first.
He rightly points out the Mayor’s “truly spectacular failure of negotiation” with regard to Crossrail.
I highlighted the Mayor’s failure of negotiation first when Crossrail was announced in October of last year and again when the Mayor started his Crossrail scare campaign at the end of February.
The Mayor’s deal is particularly bad in the context of the Â£17.8 billion annual net contribution to the Exchequer made by London (Oxford Economic Forecasting figures for City of London). In return for sending more than the cost of Crossrail to the rest of the country EVERY year, London gets a 10 year project which is majority funded by London itself and only receives a Â£5.1 billion government grant with unlimited liability for overruns. Livingstone is a terrible negotiator. He was so keen to add Crossrail to his train set he drove a really bad bargain.