Issue - meetings
Meeting: 21/07/2021 - Council (Item 6)
A report was submitted which sought approval for the investment of an additional £3m into highways maintenance during 2021/22 and which would be funded from uncommitted earmarked reserves. Given the Council’s high priority for improving Buckinghamshire’s roads, the further £3m would be added to the budget that was agreed by Council in February for highway maintenance (£2.5 million to address pothole using Plane and Patch, and £0.5million for road markings).
The report stated that the current approved budget on roads for 2021/22 was £23.9m, and would amount to a total £26.9m following approval of the additional £3m bringing the total investment on roads to £97.625m over the next four years. The total investment on roads and footways was budgeted at over £100m across the 4-year medium term Financial Plan. This was detailed in (Appendix A) to the report.
Councillor Broadbent explained briefly the rationale behind the report after which it was opened up to debate.
It was thereupon proposed by Councillor Christensen and seconded by Councillor Lambert that the resolution be amended as follows (additional wording, in BOLD):
“Council approve the investment of additional £3 million in highways maintenance and £3 million for specific footpath maintenance during 2021/2022 which will be funded from uncommitted earmarked reserves.”
Councillor Christensen explained the rationale for the amendment and highlighted the poor condition of the pavements within Bucks and suggested that they were in dire need of emergency repairs. A number of Members concurred with this viewpoint and supported the amendment. It was also suggested that additional monies carried over by many of the Community Boards could potentially be used for the purpose of improving pavements, further enabling local members to make local decisions regarding their Wards.
The Leader who had reserved his right to speak later on in the debate (as seconder), voiced his concern over the proposed amendment, stating that a total of £7m had already been made available within the programme from which the proposer could access to prioritise pavements within his own area. He emphasised that the additional £3m funding for pavements was simply not in existence, and the Council had to remain financially sound and operate within its means.
At the conclusion of the debate on the amendment, a requisite number of Members present requested that a recorded vote be held. Following a recorded vote on it, it was declared to be LOST.
Voting was as follows:-
FOR: Councillors K Bates, A Baughan, A Christensen, P Cooper, T Dixon, M Fayyaz, E Gemmell, S Guy, D Hayday, O Hayday, T Hunter-Watts, Majid Hussain, T Hussain, S James, S Kayani, M Knight, S Lambert, S Morgan, A Poland-Goodyer, G Smith, M Smith, R Stuchbury, J Wassell, A Wheelhouse and S Wilson.
AGAINST: Councillors S Adoh, M Angell, D Anthony, R Bagge, D Barnes, J Baum, D Blamires, A Bond, S Bowles, C Branston, S Broadbent, T Broom, N Brown, T Butcher, M Caffrey, R Carington, B Chapple OBE, ... view the full minutes text for item 6