Report by Executive Director of Place Services and Director of Highways, Transport and Planning
The Committee is asked to scrutinise the proposed Highway Maintenance Plan.
97.1 The Committee considered a report by Executive Director of Place
Services and Director of Highways, Transport and Planning (copy
appended to signed minutes).
97.2 Matt Davey, Director of Highways, Transport and Planning, Michele Hulme, Head of Local Highway Operations, Chris Stark, Area Manager Highways – Horsham and Richard Speller, Area Highways Manager – Mid Sussex introduced the report with a presentation (copy appended to signed minutes) which highlighted the risk-based approached that has been adopted and that this report has brought together all the Service Level Agreements that exist into the one document. This document has taken into account what can reasonably be carried out within the allocated budget and Safety Plus inspections will not change.
97.3 The Committee made comments including those that follow. It:
· Raised concerns around the service standards going down and how this sits with the expectations in the West Sussex Plan.
· Raised concern over the past budget overspend and asked if this is just a way of moving the burden of cost to others including parish and town councils.
· Raised concerns particularly regarding the reduction of grass cutting and that there did not appear to be any mention in the report to having any reactive budget should weather conditions cause significant growth. Similar concerns were raised with regards to the significant reduction in the winter salting network.
· Asked whether a full period of community engagement will be undertaken before any changes are made particularly with town and parish councils.
97.4 Mr Jones proposed a recommendation that the Committee does not support the reduction in grass-cutting, winter salting routes and line painting. This was seconded by Mr Oppler. The resolution was lost.
97.5 Resolved – That
1. This Committee notes with concern the consequences of past budget decisions and asks that they inform future budget discussions going forward.
2. The communication with members, parishes and communities going forward must be robust particularly around the changing levels of service. Also the Highways team should continue to encourage town and parish councils to take on additional works.