Savings could lead to improved roads

Published Friday, 8th June 2018

Members of Hartlepool Borough Council’s Finance and Policy Committee are about to be asked to consider ways in which to use a significant budget saving.

It could lead to £1.6million being invested in Hartlepool’s roads and pavements.

At a meeting later this month (Monday 18 June), Councillors will receive a report on the recently completed review of loan repayment costs (the Minimum Revenue Provision review), which indicates these charges will be less than the recurring annual budget by £100,000

At the request of the Leader of the Hartlepool Borough Council, Councillors on the Finance and Policy Committee are now being asked to consider two options.

The first is around using the recurring saving to reduce the 2019/20 budget deficit.

Option two looks at using the identified savings to increase borrowing to support new investment for local priorities, for example roads and pavements.

Councillor Christopher Akers-Belcher, Leader of Hartlepool Borough Council and Chair of the Finance and Policy Committee, said: “This is a very positive report and I will be recommending committee members approve the option to use the loan repayment savings to invest in our neighbourhoods. 

“This is additional investment to the £1.5m approved in February to invest in improving our neighbourhoods and estates.

“Financially, these are challenging times for all Local Authorities, but this report shows we are listening to residents and have robust plans in place to withstand these challenges.”

Councillor Stephen Akers-Belcher, Chair of Hartlepool Borough Council’s Neighbourhood Services Committee, said: “I welcome this report and will be recommending to the Finance and Policy Committee that this investment is focused on improving our roads and footpaths, something I know residents are very keen to see.

“My recommendation is in direct response to the pothole campaign led by Councillor Mike McLaughlin.”

Councillor McLaughlin added: “Having recently led a community campaign about potholes, I’m absolutely delighted this recommendation is being made.

“Any money which can help further improve the condition of our roads and pavements in Hartlepool is to be welcomed.”

The report will be discussed at a meeting of the Finance and Policy Committee at 10am on Monday 18 June at Hartlepool Civic Centre.