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£1.6m council savings could fix potholed roads and pavements

Hartlepool Borough Council leader Christopher Akers-Belcher.
Hartlepool Borough Council leader Christopher Akers-Belcher.

Hartlepool’s roads and pavements could be improved as councillors decide on ways to use a significant budget saving.

Hartlepool Borough Council’s Finance and Policy Committee are set to discuss the savings that could lead to £1.6million being invested in the town’s roads and pavements.

Councillors will discuss a report on a 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.

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.

Coun Christopher Akers-Belcher, leader of the council and chairman 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.”

Coun Stephen Akers-Belcher, chairman of the 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.”

Coun McLaughlin added: “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 meeting will be held at 10am on Monday, June 18, at Hartlepool Civic Centre.