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Powys repairs budget halved

Created on 20/09/2020 @ 07:44
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A decision has been made by Powys County Council to take £2.6 million away from this year’s £5 million annual road, bridge and street lighting repairs budget.

But the money should be available to be used in the future as part of the funding for the Highways Asset Management Plan (HAMP), in the 2021/22 and 2022/23 financial years.

It is a cost cutting measure being implemented to protect the council’s finances during the Covid-19 pandemic, in a bid to ensure this year’s budget comes in on target.

Head of Finance, Jane Thomas, has asked all services to look again at their building projects and make savings where they can.

The money forms part of an overall 10-year programme worth over £50 million to deal with infrastructure maintenance, which was approved in February.

The report to cabinet said that investment of £10 million a year is needed to “improve the condition of the network and work towards the Welsh road condition average.”

Portfolio Holder for Environment, Cllr Heulwen Hulme, (Independent – Rhiwcynon) said: “Going back to last February, we set out our capital strategy for highways for the next 10 years.

“Whilst the £5m HAMP, approved by Cabinet and set out in the capital strategy, will slow the rate of the deterioration.

“It will nonetheless continue to deteriorate, and the service’s road condition performance indicator will continue to widen from the Welsh average.

“Powys is currently ranked 22nd (of 22 Welsh local authorities) for its road conditions.

The £2.6 million will be pushed through, with £1.3 million  to be used by the service in 2021/22 and the other £1.3 million in 2022/23.

Director of Environment and Economy, Nigel Brinn, added: “The service has requested that the balance of the underspend funds takes into account delayed works and  gets rolled forward.

“It’s right that we look at in relation to the overall capital programme.”

Cabinet noted the contents of the report.


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