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Newport Politics South Wales

Newport city council’s record on pothole and road repairs defended

A SENIOR councillor in Newport has rejected claims the city’s roads are “deteriorating” because of potholes.

Laura Lacey, the cabinet member for infrastructure, said the city council was “meeting or exceeding” its targets for road inspections and repairs.

She was responding to a call from opposition councillor Will Routley, who urged the local authority to publish a “comprehensive” plan and ensure the “restoration and reliable roadways throughout Newport”.

Cllr Routley, a Conservative, asked the cabinet member about the “deteriorating condition of our pothole roads… given the legal obligation and political responsibility to maintain our highways”.

Cllr Routley added: “I urgently request that you prioritise a clear timeline for the publication of your action plan… and provide assurances regarding when residents can expect the restoration of safe and reliable roadways throughout Newport.

But Cllr Lacey defended the council’s record on road repairs, telling Cllr Routley the local authority was meeting various targets “thus ensuring compliance with the stated policies and plans”.

Recent figures show that last year “all performance measures in relation to highway inspection and reactive repairs were recorded as meeting or exceeding council set targets”, she added.

A council report for that period shows the target for repairing 90% of the most serious defects within 24 hours was met, and a separate target for repairing 85% of less serious road defects was achieved and surpassed.

Cllr Lacey, in her reply, also noted that the budget proposed by the Labour-controlled council in February, and passed in a vote, included “an additional £500,000 [which] was provisioned for infrastructure maintenance”.