£500k gov­ern­ment fund­ing is ‘just a drop in the ocean’

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - FRONT PAGE -

THE LEADER of Bucks County Coun­cil (BCC) says more money is needed to fix the pot-hole prob­lem on our roads.

The com­ments from Martin Tett, who is also trans­port spokesman for the Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment As­so­ci­a­tion, fol­low the an­nounce­ment that the county is to re­ceive £546,000 from the Gov­ern­ment to tackle the prob­lem.

Mr Tett wel­comed the cash boost but also said it is a drop in the ocean com­pared to the amount needed.

He said: “We wel­come any money from the gov­ern­ment to­wards pot­holes but just to put in per­spec­tive, we spent £25m on resur­fac­ing the roads in the county so the ex­tra £500,000 is pretty small in terms of com­par­i­son. It’s a use­ful con­tri­bu­tion but quite frankly we need a lot more than that to make a big dif­fer­ence on the roads.”

He said that to ‘com­pletely resur­face’ just the roads that need it, £250m would have to be spent. He added: “No one can af­ford that but we have to lay it in the con­text of how much needs to be spent.”

Mr Tett echoed his com­ments as LGA Trans­port spokesman, call­ing the money ‘a step in the right di­rec­tion’, but re­it­er­at­ing that coun­cils need more than 230 times that amount to cover the £11.8 bil­lion cost to bring our roads up to scratch.

Lo­cal coun­cils ‘re­main trapped in a frus­trat­ing cy­cle that will only ever leave them able to patch up those roads that are in­ad­e­quate’ he said.

He said that polling shows 83 per cent of peo­ple ‘would sup­port’ an amount of fuel duty be­ing rein­vested to help coun­cils bring our roads up to scratch.

Mr Tett added: “The con­di­tion of our roads is only go­ing to get worse un­less we ad­dress it as a na­tional pri­or­ity.

“The Gov­ern­ment’s own traf­fic pro­jec­tions

pre­dict a po­ten­tial in­crease in traf­fic of up to 55 per cent by 2040.

“Coun­cils des­per­ately need long-term and con­sis­tent fund­ing to in­vest in the resur­fac­ing projects which our road net­work des­per­ately needs over the next decade.”

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