Grass cutting frequencies will be reduce from seven times per year to three as Herefordshire Council delivers £33milion pounds of savings while ensuring it can maintain its priority services.
The Annual Plan delivered by Balfour Beatty Living Places, outlines how services will be delivered over the coming year and identifies how the council will make savings within the Public Realm revenue budget. Grass cutting and street cleansing will cost Herefordshire almost £2million this year. This is a significant element of the annual expenditure on highways services.
Cllr Price said
“We’ve had to tailor the resource levels to meet the budget but we will continue to keep the highway safe by cutting the visibility splays, carrying out weed spraying and maintaining the trees. We have improved the efficiency of the remaining resources through better deployment and scheduling, and by setting clear, productive targets. Despite this we need to reduce all grass cutting frequencies from the current seven times a year to three times a year, although rural verge cutting will remain the same. We will also look to develop community grass cutting schemes so that communities can set their own priorities.
On the positive side, we will see the largest single investment into Herefordshire’s highway network for many years. The capital budget for 2014/15 has been increased by £24.9m from £10.4m to £34.26m and this extra money will be used to improve the overall standard of the network through a programme of drainage and re-surfacing works. This will make a significant difference to the state of the counties roads.”
Balfour Beatty’s Annual Plan will be considered by Cllr Price, cabinet member for infrastructure next week and will be published to the council’s website www.herefordshire.gov.uk