Highland Council is to be asked to revisit pre-treatment budget savings
The Community Services Committee has supported a move to ask the Highland Council to revisit the budget saving of £120,000 for pre-treatment from next winter.
The Highland Council agreed as part of its budget savings in December 2014, to reduce the pre-treatment of some roads with low traffic volumes from next winter, based on experiential evidence and allowing savings of £120,000. Work is being carried out to assess traffic volume on pre-gritting routes and to benchmark against other local authorities.
Chair of the Community Services Committee, Cllr Graham Mackenzie said: “The budget savings agreed in December 2014 did not affect the pre-treatment or gritting services during this winter. These are continuing as normal within the Winter Maintenance Policy which has been in place for two years.
“It is clear, however, that there is some public concern, community representations and concerns raised by Members around the future change to our winter policy and in response to these concerns, the Committee will make a request to full Council, through the Director of Finance, to explore options for alternative savings that would allow this saving to be removed.
“We will carry out a review of winter maintenance and will bring this back to our meeting in August.”
Budget Leader, Cllr Maxine Smith added “It is important we take democracy seriously and continue to adopt a ‘bottom up’ approach, where we listen to our constituents. It is clear that there is significant public concern surrounding removal of any pre-treatment of roads during next winter. Therefore the Director of Finance has been asked to look at alternative proposals to cover this saving in year and this will come back to the full Council meeting in March for consideration.”