£245,000 Extra Cash To Fix York's Potholes Called "Small Change"
12:03pm 21st March 2014
(Updated 3:20pm 21st March 2014)
York Council has accused the government of only spending "small change" on roads in York from a pot designed to repair road surfaces after the harsh winter weather.
Dafydd Williams, has accused the government of only spending "small change" on York's roads He said:
“The award from the Department for Transport though welcome, as anything is welcome when you’ve had to make savings of £74m over five years, is little more than 0.1% of the funding awarded nationally, and falls well short of the amount the Government has removed for roads spending in recent years."
“Clearly we don’t expect to see that money back, but something that would make a tangible difference would’ve been nice. Sadly that’s not the case, so I’m pleased that we’ve made a commitment of an extra £2.3m for highways repairs in our last budget that will repair some of our worst affected roads. Though set against this, the Government’s £246,00 is a drop in the ocean and only just over half of our annual general contingency budget”.
Council Leader James Alexander said:
“The floods that have affected areas of the north in recent years appear invisible to the Conservative-led Government in Westminster, it’s as though they are not on its radar at all. Yet when problems occur in the south, money is no object according to the Prime Minister."
“The cost-benefit ratio required for flood prevention works reflects the fact that flooding is a low priority for this Government, which is bad news for many northern town and cities."
“In 2012-13 we spent £200k on flood work, and received nothing in support from the Government. This is not far off the amount we are about to receive for roads repairs, so it’s unsurprising that we won’t be getting too excited about it. Roads funding needs to be much higher if the Government expects us to effectively tackle our roads as they suffer from Government funding cuts and poor weather”.
A Department of Transport spokesperson said it was up to York Council to manage it's budget more effectively. A statement sent to Minster FM said:
"The Government is providing over £3.4 billion in this Parliament and over £5.8 billion in the next for local highways maintenance. The Department is making available an additional £183.5 million this financial year to local authorities to help repair damage to the local road network caused by the recent severe wet weather. The Chancellor of the Exchequer announced in the Budget that a further £200 million will be provided for pothole repairs in the financial year 2014 to 2015."
"However it remains the responsibility of authorities to manage their highway assets and to ensure that they have appropriate contingencies in place to deal with any severe weather that may occur from time to time."
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