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Agenda Item No

The Vale of Glamorgan Council

Cabinet Meeting: 1 July, 2013

Report of the Cabinet Member for the Environment and Visible Services

Funding Arrangements - Highway Assets 2013 / 2014 and 2014 / 2015

Purpose of the Report

1. To formally agree the work programmes for the second and third years of the Local Government Borrowing Initiative (LGBI) for highway assets.

Recommendations

1. That Cabinet approve the LGBI work programme for the 2013 / 2014 and 2014 / 2015 periods as detailed at Appendix 'A'.

2. That delegated authority is granted to the Director of Visible Services and Housing, in consultation with the Cabinet Member for the Environment and Visible Services, to vary the works programme if necessary, as a consequence of any changes in the structural condition assessments through routine highway maintenance inspections.

3. That this report be forwarded to the Economy and Environment Scrutiny Committee for information.

Reasons for the Recommendations

1. To formally approve the highway asset work programmes for 2013 / 2014 and 2014 / 2015 identified within the Business Justification Case (BJC).

2. To permit the necessary flexibility for minor changes to be made if much higher priority highway works become necessary in areas outside of the current programme.

3. To ensure that this Committee is suitably informed.

Background

2. The LGBI was first introduced by Welsh Government for the provision of grant funding in order to free up Council resources to allow prudential borrowing to address highway asset improvement during the 2012 / 2013 financial period. The details of this and the supporting BJC were presented to Cabinet on 18th April 2012 (Minute No. C 1699 refers).

3. This report details the work programme for the 2013 / 2014 and 2014 / 2015 periods which has been agreed by the Regional Transport Consortia (RTC) and subsequently signed off by the Council's Section 151 officer.

Relevant Issues and Options

4. This is the second year of the 3 year initiative of the LGBI; the purpose of which is to allow local authorities to free up resources in order to borrow funding totalling £170 million across Wales. This allows the Vale of Glamorgan to borrow £6.7 million over the 3 year period 2012 / 2013 to 2014 / 2015 equating to £2.23 million for each of the financial years of the initiative. The 2012 / 2013 programme as part of the LGBI was successfully delivered by the Highways and Engineering division of Visible Services.

5. In order to progress with the LGBI for the financial period 2013 / 2014 and 2014 / 2015 a condition of the funding required that the planned works programme over this two year period was included within the BJC. A full copy of the LGBI submission including the BJC and the 2 year programme are included in Appendix 'A'.

6. The BJC for the Vale of Glamorgan has been given assurance by the Highways Engineering Service Group and subsequently signed at by the Council's Section 151 Officer.

7. The Highways Engineering Services Group were formed within the RTC with Members from County Surveyors Society (CSS) (Wales) to which the Operational Manager Highways and Engineering is a member. The merit of these groups being to provide expert advice to the RTC and WG on the LGBI process and provide assurance to each Council's BJC.

8. Members will find included within the BJC at Appendix 'A' the proposed programme of work to be delivered over the remaining 2 years of the LGBI.

9. The programmes specifically detail the lists of roads that are planned to receive either resurfacing, micro asphalt proprietary surface treatment or that at surface dressing (SD). The programme also includes a planned footway renewal programme of £150k per annum to be delivered over the same period.

10. The BJC also includes for the annual replacement at £250k per annum of sodium (yellow light) street lights with new LED type lanterns. These will be replaced as part of the street lighting ongoing energy and carbon reduction programme and the improvement of the street lighting asset.

 The highway resurfacing and surface treatment programme have been established through the previous 3 year Highway Maintenance Resurfacing Plan. It should be noted that these are indicative works and that the highway undergoes deterioration and continuous assessment on an ongoing basis. The planned works may therefore be subject to change dependent upon the structural condition assessment through normal highway maintenance inspections.

Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)

12. Financial issues have largely been dealt with within the body of this report though more details of the funding arrangements are included in the LGBI submission at Appendix 'A'.

13. Welsh Government has confirmed that funding for this year's LGBI funding of £304k will be received via the Revenue Support Grant.

14. The LGBI allocation is supplemented by £300k per annum from the Council's capital programme for each year, 2013/14 and 2014/15. This will bring the total proposed spend for each year on refurbishment of the Council's highway assets to £2.53 million.

Sustainability and Climate Change Implications

15. The quality of the Council's highway assets links to road safety and the economic prosperity of the area. Improved assets will also reduce the likelihood of successful claims being made against the Council for personal injury and property damage.

Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)

16. The Council has a duty as Highway Authority to maintain the highway pursuant to the Highways Act 1980.

Crime and Disorder Implications

17. None.

Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)

18. None.

Corporate/Service Objectives

19. E6 - Develop a programme of highway resurfacing and maintenance to maintain urban and rural highways and increase customer satisfaction with highway maintenance. (2014 / 2015)

Policy Framework and Budget

20. This report is a matter for Executive decision by Cabinet.

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

21. Issues affect all Wards so no individual Member consultation has taken place.

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

22. Economy and Environment.

Background Papers

None.

Contact Officer

Andrew Loosemore - Operational Manager Highways and Engineering

Tel: 02920 673 200.

Officers Consulted

Operational Manager - Legal (Committee Reports)

Senior Accountant

Accountant - Visible Services

Responsible Officer:

Miles Punter - Director of Visible Services and Housing

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