This funding ceased on 31 March 2022 - and has been replaced with the Network Support Grant.
The Scottish Government put in place financial support packages to help bus operators maintain and increase essential services as we moved through the COVID-19 Route Map.
COVID-19 Support Grant (CSG)
This grant maintained National Concessionary Travel Scheme (NCTS) reimbursement and Bus Service Operators Grant (BSOG) payments at the levels forecast prior to the impact of COVID-19. All eligible operators had to continue to deliver around 30% (25-35%) of bus service levels for the period of the scheme, and engage with relevant local authorities and health boards to determine which services should operate.
The grant was paid up to and including 31 March 2022, and could be supplemented with additional funding (COVID-19 Support Grant - Restart) to enable services to be extended as Scotland moved out of lockdown.
COVID-19 Support Grant - Restart (CSG-R)
The Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity Michael Matheson announced on 19 June 2020 that additional funding was being made available to support bus operators to increase bus services during the pandemic. Operators were supported to provide these services through £223 million of emergency funding up to and including 31 March 2022. This funding ensured operators were able to run vital services through the pandemic, whilst also taking into account the rapidly rising costs of fuel, energy and staffing.
COVID-19 Support Grant - Restart (CSG-R) covered the gap between costs and anticipated loss of fare-paying passenger revenue that bus operators experienced due to physical distancing and reduced carrying capacity, and was available to support both fully commercial and local authority supported services. This funding was paid through a public service contract.