Liberal Democrat Councillors in Prestwich have reacted with anger after details of the Council’s road maintenance package for the year were announced this week. The Conservative-run Bury Council has announced that Prestwich will receive just under £63,000 for road and pavement repairs for the coming year, despite a list of required repairs amounting to over ten times that figure.
Reacting to the news, St Mary’s Ward Liberal Democrat Councillor Donal O’Hanlon said “I am astonished by this disgraceful neglect of local roads and pavements by the Tories. The Council’s engineers have identified the thirteen most dilapidated roads in Prestwich, including really shocking cases like Warwick Street. In total these will cost over £700,000 to fix, yet the Council have offered us just £63,000. That’s a terrible neglect of the area, especially since the Tories just put up Council Tax by over 4%. Once again they’re taking more, and giving less.”
The funding figures were released at the same time as it was revealed that broken roads and pavements are costing local taxpayers millions in compensation claims. In response to a question raised by Liberal Democrats at the Town Hall, Conservative Executive Member for Environmental Services Cllr Dorothy Gunther admitted that compensation claims for trips and falls on local pavements totalled over £2m in recent years.
Commenting on the figures, Cllr O’Hanlon said “Two million pounds of taxpayers’ money has been wasted because the Council aren’t maintaining our roads and pavements. They are clearly a danger, and this is a staggering amount of money being thrown away. The fact that the Tories are still offering us nothing like the appropriate amount of funding just shows how out of touch they are.
“We will continue to campaign for a better deal on local roads, and stop this shocking neglect of Prestwich. It’s time the Conservatives at the Town Hall gave us a fair deal.”