Liberal Democrat councillors have condemned the freeze to funds given to councils to carry out transport maintenance effectively representing a real-terms cut.
On 28 February the Government announced their plans to freeze road maintenance funding for local councils for the next three years. For 2022/23 the funding to York has been frozen at £2.8m, after it was cut from £4m in 2020/21.
The loss of more than a million pounds each year is approximately equal to a reduction of over 19 thousand potholes which could have been filled had the 2020/21 levels of funding been sustained.
Despite the cut in national funds, the local road maintenance programme for 2022/23 in York will come to £7,3m.
Councillor Stephen Fenton, Liberal Democrat transport spokesperson, commented:
“Government’s decision to not fill our highways maintenance funding gap is concerning and will continue to put pressure on already stretched council budgets.
"Councils rely on this funding to carry out vitally important road repairs and maintain the condition of road networks, which affect all users, including pedestrians and cyclists. With a backlog of road repairs and skyrocketing labour and material costs, this freeze in funding is effectively a cut to these crucial services.
“Whilst the Government continues to fail local councils and slash road maintenance budgets, we are prioritising frontline services and investing in road maintenance despite ever increasing pressure on council finances.”