Caithness Map :: Links to Site Map Great value Unlimited Broadband from an award winning provider  

 

Roads In Caithness Will Get Worse Caithness Area Committee Admits As Funding Is Inadequate For 2024/25

30th January 2024

Photograph of Roads In Caithness Will Get Worse Caithness Area Committee Admits As Funding Is Inadequate For 2024/25

The Council at the Caithness Area Committee agree the roads budget for 2024/25 with exactly the same amount as for 2023/24. Clearly with rapidly increasing costs this will come nowhere near to maintaining the roads to even the poor condition they are now in. Roads will get worse unless more funds are received from Scottish Government.

The council in its paper 29 January 2024 admits -
This report recognises that the local road network serves both strategic traffic and local access to remote communities. Road improvement schemes are selected on both the strategic and local importance and the extent and severity of defects. Noting that funding falls short of addressing all of the known defects, low volume and rural routes may be disadvantaged as prioritisation of limited funding dictates.

Item 7 https://www.highland.gov.uk/meetings/meeting/4921/caithness_committee

For 2023/24 the council had a similar statement 6 February 2024 when the budget for roads was set -
The level of investment across Highland falls short of the budget requirements to maintain a steady state condition of the road network. Deterioration of the overall network will occur with a corresponding risk to the travelling public. An increase in damage claims can also be expected, as the road defects develop.[/b]
6 February 2023 Item 8 https://www.highland.gov.uk/meetings/meeting/4739/caithness_committee

Members of the Caithness Committee today (Monday 29 January) agreed a list of prioritised programme of works for structural overlay/inlay works and surface dressing schemes which will be funded out of the Capital Budget allocation for 2024/25.

The actual 2024/25 capital roads budget allocation for Caithness is still to be finalised but based on previous financial years and analysis of road condition survey results it is expected to be £594,452 in total, consisting of £335,065 for overlay/inlay works and £259,387 towards surface dressing schemes.

Caithness Committee Chair, Cllr Ron Gunn said: "It has been well reported that the roads network across Caithness are currently in poor condition, making driving conditions for both residents and visitors challenging.

"It is important that as a committee we take every opportunity to raise the scale of the challenge before us. We know that we don't have all the funding we need to do everything we want, but by agreeing the capital roads' priorities for the coming year not only helps us allocate funding according to priority but sets out a clear work programme for our staff.

"We will continue to do the best we can with the resources we have."

Works for the Caithness area are identified based on a prioritised ranking. The ranking is informed by:

Scottish Road Maintenance Condition Survey (SRMCS) data;
safety inspections;
service inspections; and
input and feedback from Ward Members

The list of prioritised projects approved along with the report presented to the committee is available from the Council's website - https://www.highland.gov.uk/meetings/meeting/4921/caithness_committee (Item 7)

Should the approved 2024/25 budget differ from previous budgets then the programme will be adjusted appropriately.

The next item on the agenda was a report on the Annual Area Roads Capital Programme 2023/24. The Area Roads Manager provided members with details of the works on the prioritised list completed to date and details of the additional works identified and prioritised throughout the year.

Cllr Gunn wishes to thank the local road teams for their hard work during the recent wintery weather. He said: "On behalf of the Committee I would like to thank our roads operations teams who have been out in all hours during the recent very challenging bad weather conditions to clear the snow, ice, and debris from our roads. They have been terrific and have worked so hard to keep routes open."

This report on the roads should be considered against the background of huge cuts to capital funding to council and health boards by the Scottish Government.

The Highland council full budget will be announced in February but already there have been statements on the dire state of funds for spending across the council. Cuts in a range of services are expected for 24/25. The paper on 14 December 2023 said "In the finance report to Council in October 2023, Council Officers projected a three year funding gap of £108 million." Item 7 at https://www.highland.gov.uk/meetings/meeting/4905/highland_council

 

Related Businesses

 

Related Articles

Yesterday
Apprenticeships Offer Earning Opportunities Alongside Learning In Refurbishment Of Historic ParkThumbnail for article : Apprenticeships Offer Earning Opportunities Alongside Learning In Refurbishment Of Historic Park
Today, Morrison Construction introduced some of their local apprentices who are working on the UK Governments' Levelling Up Funded refurbishment project at the Northern Meeting Park in Inverness.  All these apprentices have been recruited from the Highland area.  
13/4/2024
Independent Candidate Wins Inverness South Bi-electionThumbnail for article : Independent Candidate Wins Inverness South Bi-election
The by-election to elect a councillor to represent Ward 19 - Inverness South on The Highland Council has been won by Duncan Cameron McDonald - Independent who was one of the eight candidates who contested the vacancy.   Voters in the ward went to the poll yesterday (Thursday 11 April) and the by-election count was held this morning in The Highland Council Headquarters in Inverness.  
10/4/2024
Technology Placement Programme In Highland
The Technology Placement Programme offers funding to businesses in the Highland Council area to cover up to 70% of the cost of employing a student or graduate.   The Technology Placement Programme offers funding to businesses in the Highland Council area to cover up to 70% of the cost of employing a student or graduate.  
3/4/2024
Council Announces Extra Digital Funding To Support Highland BusinessesThumbnail for article : Council Announces Extra Digital Funding To Support Highland Businesses
Following the success of its Business Digital Grant scheme launched last year, The Highland Council is delighted to announce further funding.  This is to help Highland companies access digital support alongside other business growth support.  
27/3/2024
Wick Public Service Obligation Celebrates Successful Second Year Subsidising Wick Aberdeen FlightsThumbnail for article : Wick Public Service Obligation Celebrates Successful Second Year Subsidising Wick Aberdeen Flights
The Highland Council is delighted to confirm a highly successful second year for Public Service Obligation (PSO) flights between Wick and Aberdeen.   The period from April 2023 to March 2024 has seen a substantial increase in passenger numbers, with several months seeing over 1,000 passengers using the service, and overall the service has seen year on year growth of 25%.  
18/3/2024
Members Agree Digital Ambition For Highland Council - Or How To Make Cuts Without Saying SoThumbnail for article : Members Agree Digital Ambition For Highland Council - Or How To Make Cuts Without Saying So
Members of Highland Council, who met on Thursday 14 March 2024, approved a corporate Digital Ambition, which has been designed to deliver significant organisational change across Council services, recognising the current priorities within the organisation.   The Strategy, which is embedded within the wider Council Delivery Plan, has been developed to focus attention and resources on areas of change which will deliver the greatest benefit to the Council.  
14/3/2024
Clarification On The Role Of MCR Pathways' Coordinators And Mentors In Highland Schools
The Council remains committed to supporting mentoring in our schools, including the support that is currently delivered through the MCR Pathways programme.   Highland Council is currently undertaking a review of Employability Support provided by a number of different council services and how these relate to the work carried out by external partners and in our schools.  
15/3/2024
Council Agrees A New Draft Highland Outcome Improvement Plan
Highland Council members have considered and agreed a revised draft Highland Outcome Improvement Plan.   The partnership plan has been reviewed and updated by the Community Planning Partnership.  
15/3/2024
Members agree Highland Council's new Community Wealth Building Strategy
Members at today's (14 March 2024) meeting of The Highland Council agreed the local authority's new draft Community Wealth Building Strategy.   They were also asked to note that a period of public engagement on the draft will now begin, with a final strategy returning to full Council for consideration in September.  
15/3/2024
£60m Capital Investment Approved For Roads And Infrastructure In Highland
Plans to invest up to £60m new Capital in Highland roads and infrastructure have been approved by Members at the Council meeting on 14 March 2024.   The decision will see an additional £40m Capital investment in roads and transport infrastructure.