Road Surface Treatments Association Wants New Chancellor to Concentrate on Local Road Networks

The RSTA has been known for bringing focus to various issues when it comes to road networks across the UK. Recently, one of its calls for action has centred on Phillip Hammond, the new chancellor. The Road Surface Treatments Association is calling on Chancellor Hammond to acknowledge and understand the value of local road networks and bring focus on this in his coming statement for autumn.

The RSTA wants to reverse decades of under-valuing the local road networks

The RSTA wants to reverse decades of under-valuing the local road networks

The problem with the under-valuing of local road networks

As the RSTA states, the under-appreciation of the worth to the society and the economy of a good local road network is seen through many decades of a lack of investment in road network maintenance, which has resulted in pothole problems worth a total of £12 billion across many local roads in the country.

According to the association, the central government does not seem to understand the overall importance of local road networks as a link to railway stations, the national road networks, and to airports and ports. Aside from this, those local road networks also play a vital role as the main access point for schools, homes, businesses, and medical establishments.


What the RSTA wants   

The RSTA simply wants Chancellor Hammond to correct the impression that local road networks are not set to receive any financing from the road fund for new vehicle excise duties as announced by George Osborne, the previous chancellor. The RSTA wants Chancellor Hammond to correct this impression when he delivers his autumn address.

The road fund, which will be introduced and launched in 2017, is supposedly only for motorways and trunk road networks, and not local road networks. According to the previous chancellor, the fund will not be accessible to local road network projects even though these local roads account for about 98 percent of the roads in the UK.

The RSTA’s chief executive, Howard Robinson, states that due to “decades of under-investment,” local road networks are in continuous decline. According to Mr. Robinson, Chancellor Hammond should show that he acknowledges the importance of these local roads – as well as announce to the public that the aforementioned fund should be used not only for national roads but for local roads as well.

Whilst the government has made a commitment of £6 billion for the maintenance of local roads from 2015 to the year 2021, England’s drivers are set to pay their duties on vehicle excise over the same period to the tune of £30 billion. This vast discrepancy on local road network funds should be dealt with, the RSTA states. 

The RSTA adds that if Chancellor Hammond would like to impart a positive impact on the economy as his legacy, he should give a higher level of investment for the maintenance of local road networks as well as work closely with local councils and authorities so they can develop schemes for local road network funding for the long term. 

Posted on 21 Nov 2016 in News

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