A Labour councillor says Conservative representatives have stayed silent on the issue of road repairs after a report claimed that funding had fallen by 22% across the country.

The Local Government Association said the money available to local authorities had dropped by £400million.

The group said that the money could have seen more than 9.5 million potholes filled in had it not been cut.

Councillor Steve Norman, leader of Lichfield District Council’s Labour opposition group, said: 

Steve Norman

“Today’s news from the Local Government Association confirms what I learnt on a parish council’s zoom meeting with the county council recently when an officer revealed that their budget had been cut by almost £10million. 

“I don’t recall seeing a statement from them about that, and certainly not during the recent election campaign, or any concern by Lichfield district’s MPs.” 

Cllr Steve Norman, Lichfield District Council

The Local Government Association said that the Ministers needed to plug the £400million gap and provide an additional £500million to fund much-needed road repairs.

A spokesperson said:

“The ability of councils to improve local transport connectivity and infrastructure, including upgrades to local bus, road and cycle infrastructure, is critical to Government ambitions to level up the country, reduce carbon emissions from transport, and support our long-term economic recovery from the pandemic.

“Councils are working hard to keep our roads safe and resilient, repairing potholes as quickly as they can. However, it would already take £10billion and more than a decade to clear the current local roads repair backlog, with the Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent cancellation of key planned works risking extending this backlog further.

“With long-term and consistent investment in local road maintenance in the Spending Review, councils can embark on the widespread improvement of our roads that is desperately needed, to the benefit of all road users up and down the country, including cyclists.”

Local Government Association spokesperson

Cllr Norman said residents were beginning to lose faith in potholes and other highways issues being repaired over concerns they will be deemed as non-priority issues.

“Members of the public tell me that they don’t bother reporting repairs if they are going to be put in the ‘never get done’ box.” 

Cllr Steve Norman, Lichfield District Council

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5 Comments

  1. It might help if there was a way of reporting individual potholes or complaining about them, or does SCC not want to open the floodgates?

  2. Many times we have reported potholes to highways. They always reply they are not deep enough. Need to lose a vehicle and they may be interested.

  3. ML, got it a bit about face on my post. You can report individual potholes but not stretches of road. If there are therefore several potholes in a road, which there usually is, you would have to put in a report for each one, a formidable task given the state of the roads around here. If you report a pothole, they will give it a number. Stretches of road however will apparently be picked up in routine inspections. Draw your own conclusions as to whether this happens. The complaints system doesn’t include roads, and you are back to square one.

  4. John I agree with your last post but your first post says it would be useful if you could report individual potholes and you actually can.

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