Emergency fund appeal to fill in holes across city's roads

LABOUR is calling for an emergency fund to repair Hull's crumbling streets and paths.

Opposition councillors say more needs to be done to tackle the aftermath of the worst cold snap in 30 years.

At today's meeting to set council tax at Hull they will propose an extra 2.5m being spent on roads and another 1m on repairing collapsed and damaged drains and gulleys.

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Labour Group leader Coun Steve Brady said: "Entire roads and pavements are collapsing.

"Short term and temporary repairs have added to the problems we have to face. If some of the pot holes get any deeper we will need cavers repair them.

"The Lib Dems should support our plans for an emergency cash boost."

Commuter Peter Jones who drives into the city from Camerton contacted Hull Council three weeks ago, appalled by the condition of some of the roads he uses, including Colonial Street, which he says, is "more like the surface of the moon".

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After his complaint one pothole was repaired, leaving half a dozen others. He said: "It looked like someone had been down to B&Q bought ready-made tarmac, patted it down with the back of the spade and said 'job's a good 'un' and gone home. It's going to last about two minutes. I know they might be cash-strapped but this is essential infrastructure."

But Lib Dem councillor Mike Ross said they were already getting to grips with the problem.

He said: "We have continued our investment in pothole-busting teams. We know how important the condition of roads and pavements is to residents because they tell us.

"It's going to take time because there are so many to deal with, but we are making sure the work is done."

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Labour will face criticism at the meeting for not putting forward a revenue budget, which decides the amount of council tax people will pay.

The Lib Dems have gained credit by proposing a zero increase in the council element of the bill – but Coun Brady said the public should not be fooled, as next year there were "huge, huge" cuts in the making.

Coun Ross claimed: "The Labour Group with a group of 20 can't manage a budget whereas the Tories with a group of two can. They are not fit to call themselves an opposition."