The cost of fixing potholes on Scotland’s roads is claimed to be almost £1.7bn.

Figures were obtained from local authorities via a freedom of information request and suggest council repair backlogs run into hundreds of millions of pounds.

The data suggests it would take £1.68bn of taxpayers’ money to bring Scottish roads up to scratch.

Labour has accused the Scottish government of leaving roads to crumble.

Dumfries and Galloway Council had the highest repair bill backlog, with a bill of just over £217m.

According to the data, Highland Council had a backlog worth more than £194m, and Argyll and Bute Council had one worth £112m.

Six local authorities did not reveal the extent of their road repair backlog, including East Lothian, Renfrewshire, and Aberdeen City.

The City of Edinburgh Council had a repair backlog worth just over £77m, according to the data, while Glasgow City Council had one worth £96m.

Neil Bibby, Scottish Labour’s transport spokesman, said the “astonishing figures lay bare the dire state of disrepair Scotland’s roads are in after years of neglect”.

But the Scottish government said local government funding was up, and that maintenance of local roads was the responsibility of councils.

Mr Bibby, MSP for West of Scotland, said the Scottish government had “cut funding to the bone, leaving roads to crumble and taxpayers to pick up the bill”.

“Our pothole-ridden roads are a daily reminder of how badly the SNP have let down communities all around us,” he said.

“Now the Greens and the SNP have teamed up to hit councils with another year of brutal cuts things are only set to get worse.

“The SNP must stop burying their heads in the sand about this and show some leadership dealing with the mess they created.”

‘Treating councils fairly’

A Scottish government spokesman said that “despite continued economic uncertainty facing us all due to the pandemic, we are treating councils fairly and providing a real terms increase of 6.3% to local authority budgets for the coming year – despite cuts to Scotland’s overall budget by the UK government”.

“The budget provides local government revenue funding amounting to almost £12.7bn – a cash increase of almost £1bn and a real terms increase of £681.8m. In addition, councils will receive a fair share of a further £93.9m which is currently undistributed,” the spokesman said.

He added that maintenance of the local road network was the responsibility of local authorities and it was the responsibility of individual councils to manage their own budgets and to allocate the total financial resources available to them on the basis of local needs and priorities.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *