The House of Commons Transport Committee has today welcomed a commitment by the Department for Transport to press the Treasury for a longer-term funding settlement for councils to tackle the plague of potholes on local roads.
The pledge to work across Government to make the case for a long-term funding plan, is contained in the Government response to the Committee’s report Local roads funding and maintenance: filling the gap.
The report, published in July, proposed a front-loaded, long-term funding settlement for councils to tackle a historic backlog of poorly maintenance roads and plan confidently for the future.
In addition to signalling support on key recommendations on funding and expenditure, the Government has accepted Committee recommendations on making it easier for the public to report potholes and bringing innovation funding together in one place.
Commenting, Chair of the Transport Committee Lilian Greenwood MP, said:“A simple visit to the shops or the regular journey to work can result in injury or damage to someone’s vehicle from the plague of potholes on our local roads. This is an issue that affects everyone – pedestrians, cyclists and drivers – every day.
“We therefore welcome the commitment from the Department to work across government on giving local councils the cash and long-term funding certainty they need to tackle the effects on roads of years of neglect.
“The new DfT ministerial team’s willingness to engage with the work and recommendations of the Committee is refreshing. We’ll continue to press to ensure the Government commits to proper funding to make sure roads are safe for all.”
CECA Director of External Affairs Marie-Claude Hemming said: “We need to move away from the current model in which we are patching and repairing a network that is degenerating faster than it can be fixed.
“The only way to do this is by implementing targeted investment to fix underlying problems on the network, which will require a longer-term funding settlement for councils to undertake this necessary work.
“CECA welcomes the DfT’s commitment to work towards such a settlement, which will enable a strategic and long-term solution to fixing our local roads network, to the benefit of business and communities across the country.”