Apr 20 2012 by Craig Robertson, Dumfries Standard Friday
IN A large, rural region like Dumfries and Galloway, the roads network is the lifeline of the economy, health service, tourism and much more.
Previous administrations have left us with a huge backlog in maintenance and successive Labour and SNP Governments at Holyrood have done precious little for the A75, A76 and A77.
When this Conservative-led administration came into office, it inherited a Labour budget that allowed no flexibility for extra spending on roads.
Over the past four years, the administration has spent £12 million extra in an effort to catch up with the backlog it inherited. And this progress will continue if we form the new administration.
The Conservatives are pledged to spend at least £50 million on roads over the next five years. That is no small amount of money, so we also want to spend it more wisely.
So we will move from the current over-dependence on temporary repairs to a system whereby many more repairs will be permanent – less cold tar molehills flattened with a shovel, less waste of council tax-payers’ money. We have a disproportionately large road network to look after. For too long, administrations neglected the network, cutting budgets and building up an enormous maintenance backlog.
This Conservative–led administration takes road upkeep seriously.
Our record proves that beyond doubt, and it is a record that we will build on for the next five years, if re-elected.