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Ealing and Northfield

More road spending

Next Tuesday the Cabinet will decide on some 20 issues. One of the most important for residents will be the amount of money we spend next year on road and pavement renewal, see report here. This was an area that was sorely neglected through 12 years of Labour administration. The graph below shows how this capital budget has changed over the ten years to-date plus next year’s proposed budget.

ealing-road-resurfacing

We did not set the 2006/7 capital budget but we managed to boost the paltry £1 million committed by Labour in its last budget by 50%. In our first three capital budgets we will have committed £3.5 million, £8.5 million and £6.5 million respectively. In three years we will have spent more on our roads than Labour did in three four year terms. Note that Labour spent no Ealing money on the roads in 1999/2000. Maybe Labour thought the world would end with the Millennium?

Whatever your views on climate change and transport, roads are a basic bit of infrastructure that we all rely on. Taking a 12 year holiday on this kind of basic housekeeping is pretty rubbish government.

6 replies on “More road spending”

A good bit of electioneering here. Lots of voters own cars.

One could argue that the ‘extra’ £15 million spent on roads could have been better spent on enabling more open entry State Primary School places; better provisioning for helping the mentally ill; towards a functioning Ealing Police Station; or towards making Ealing Broadway Station ‘fit for purpose’.

Only 15 months to go now to the 2010 Councillor elections.

David Cameron is launching a green paper which inter alia is reported as saying:

‘Council chiefs would be forced to reveal their pay and perks to make local government more accountable, under plans unveiled by the Conservatives.’
‘Under the proposals councils would publish detailed information on expenditure etc’
‘Authorities will be subject to more transparency’

It’s about time you followed your leader and revealed whether expenditure kept up with the budget. We can’t have one communications law for you and one for your leader. Otherwise we don’t know how to cast our vote.

Another good sign that the noticeably poor management and maintenance of the local environment by previous Labour Councils has been arrested! They not only left Ealing Borough town centres in squalor but the the pathways in the parks full of potholes!

Eric,

The figure is £19 million.

Call it electioneering if you want. Keeping the town working at the most basic level by repairing the streets is what we are here for.

Here is some more “electioneering”.

The budget paper we will discuss next week spells out how we will spend £18.625 million expanding primary school places.

I know you have a particular interest in mental health services. You will know that this is largely the responsibility of the NHS although obviously our highly rated adult services teams have a role to play.

The Police station really is the Met’s problem not ours although we do keep pressing them to sort out their reception area. I have myself written to the Borough Commander myself to complain about this. Have WEN and SEC done this?

Again with the station I have to say that whilst we can influence it, it is not our station. I have seen the Crossrail plans for the station and they are disappointingly modest. I appreciate they don’t need to add to the cost, complexity and risk of an already huge project by solving every public transport problem in London but the plans are modest to say the least.

By all means call us to account for the things we are responsible for but don’t ask the Council to do everything because we don’t and we can’t.

George,

I am a bit lost with your comments again.

We publish pay bands for officers in our Statement of Accounts. We also publish all councillors’ allowances.

Do you want to wade through the budget report linked above if you want some transparency?

One thing that the Mayor has done, which I really like, is to publish details of all transactions over £1,000, see here. Is that what you are talking about?

What I am asking is probably something which neither of us can do.
What I want to see is where capital expenditure is on target and where it is not and why. Not a surface report and not a report so detailed that it is impossible to understand. Whatever your politics and whether a cabinet member or not, I think this is an open way to treat the public. One of your financial people should publish this each year as a matter of course, without us having to get in a tangle. This should not come from a member of the public.
What the money is spent on is different. I am extremely glad that the roads are being improved, although still some of the main thoroughfares are shockingly bumpy. Again, wouldn’t it be good if Around Ealing as well as you provided the link to where the list of roads due for repair can be accessed. How many people read your site?
I failed to follow what has happened to old peoples homes and also facilities but did I read something was shut down recently?
If the Council can spend more capital on mental health then from my experience in this field, go for it.

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