York’s Labour councillors will use their time in next week’s full council meeting to instigate a debate on the decline in road standards under the current Lib-Dem/Tory coalition leadership. Worrying figures that show the current coalition council has failed to invest sufficiently in York’s highways network, with severely damaged roads increasing in some cases by 300%.
Labour Holgate councillor Kallum Taylor will propose the motion. He says:
“Liberal Democrats and Conservatives running the council since 2015 have clearly not seen road surface standards as a priority, as evidenced by the huge leap in the percentage of roads now in desperate need of repair. The number of residential streets in need of repair has gone from 7% under Labour to 21% under the current Coalition. Unclassified roads in need of repair have gone from 10% to 28% on the watch of the same two parties.
“It doesn’t surprise me given the amount of contact I get from residents appalled at the state of roads in Holgate ward, as I know my colleagues do in the wards they represent. I think residents will find it appalling, as do I, to know that York ranks as the worst in the country for the number of minor roads in need of repair.
“Being the worst in the country is a label that is becoming increasingly appropriate for this Lib-Dem/Tory run council”.
Labour Heworth Cllr. Barbara Boyce said despite ongoing funding cuts, it is possible through long term investment to improve the state of York’s roads. She explains:
“The money a council puts into roads should reflect their condition and Labour did this until 2015. We have also shown through the budget our commitment to road standards by committing an extra £1m each year – something Conservatives and Lib Dems voted against – showing it is possible to make roads a priority for all users.
“We need whoever is running the council after May to change the council’s approach in order to reverse the slide to the current situation where York has between a quarter and a third of some roads that aren’t fit for purpose. That’s some indictment on the priorities of the current council”.
The next full year’s figures are expected in June for 2018-19, which are likely to be worse still, based on the current trajectory.