Funding for to tackle the “plague of potholes” on local roads should be guaranteed for periods of several years rather than on an annual basis, the Department for Transport (DfT) has told the Treasury.
The recommendations come in the wake of a July report by the Transport Committee, which described the state of local roads in England and Wales as a “national scandal” and called on the DfT to propose a “front-loaded, five-year funding settlement.”
In response, the DfT has welcomed a long-term approach, believing that “a consistent funding certainty for local highways maintenance is important to ensure that highway authorities can make effective decisions and to seek efficiencies through the supply chain.”
Lillian Greenwood, chair of the Transport Select Committee, welcomed the DfT’s commitment, saying it would give local councils the cash and certainty they need to tackle the effects of what she described as “years of neglect” on roads.
Nicholas Lyes, RAC head of roads policy, also welcomed the certainty of long-term funding, adding: “Drivers are still twice as likely to break down as a result of hitting a pothole in 2019 compared to 2006, so any changes to improve the situation can’t really come soon enough.”