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The truths they don't want you to read....

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

To salt or not to salt?

If the Council believe that diluting the salt mix on roads is acceptable, when it leads to a bus load of kids going into the ditch, can I 'dilute' my Council Tax payments with beads?

I think the problem here is that no-one expected any cold weather in the winter.

I understand that the Council just renegotiated/imposed new contracts on those doing the gritting, whereby the standing charge was reduced and the mileage allowance increased.  This save money on gritting in every year except those where you need to grit, so expect to see a huge overspend reported.

The impact of the ice is obvious in the huge potholes in the roads that are downright dangerous in some places, and which is going to keep the road squad busy for the Spring.


Anonymous said...

It's certainly going to provide an interesting backdrop for the budget setting exercise on which the Council are allegedly to be consulting us shortly.

What is the current running overspend for the last two financial years - £1.3 million? (And I don't recall any plans (apart from prayers for a better winter) being put forward last year to address that.)

So - any guesses on the 2010/2011 overspend even taking into account the contract changes ?

I'll open the book at a further £1.5 million. I look forward to seeing the Council's proposals to meet this in addition to the running deficit and in addition to the required budget cuts.

Flirty Gerty said...

I am firmly convinced that the powers-that-be have just been putting grit lorries round the streets with the lights flashing and a sack of feathers in the hopper, so ineffective has the last round of gritting been.

My feeling is that the first two lots of snow and ice were dealt with fairly efficiently, but in the meantime someone has looked at the cost and we are now getting 'Austerity Grit' for the rest of the winter.

Anonymous said...

I think we should all refuse to pay our council tax in January as a result of the chaos that this Council has caused this winter. It is a disgrace.

Dr Evadne said...

Tend to agree with Flirty. Yes the gritters are out and about and yes there is stuff being dumped onto the road surface. But it looks a bit like the stuff you use for surface dressing or bulking out cement (she said being an expert builder).

We all know it has been a difficult winter but we haven't had the same volumes of snow as the mainland and the weather forecasts have been surprisingly accurate. Yet the roads in places are like skating rinks and how more people haven't ended up in ditches or over the side of cliffs is a miracle. And is is beyond the capabilties of these 'spreading' vehicles to actually spread the grit (or whatever it is) into passing places? No one wants to get stuck in one of those...even the gritters won't pull into them!!

A Happy New year to you all.

Anonymous said...

It will be even more interesting now given 4 school closures have been rejected by the Scottish Government - Carloway, Seilebost, Shawbost S1 & 2 and Lionel S1 & 2.

To keep these schools open will cost money, so there will inevitably be cuts in the other budgets. What will have to be cut instead?

Anonymous said...


....other cuts....hmm

Well once they have finished paying for the schools and the extra salt, that should leave Mr Campbell and Mr Burr sitting in the white house... they could just share an office and turn down the lights cosy!

Anonymous said...

9:59 Is right. And this has come just on the eve of the Comhairle Cuts Spin Roadshow; the figures at that will now be meaningless as a few million quid have to be cut/found from somewhere else.

Has the Comhairle actually signed the contracts for the road widening in Uist? If not, can expect to see that go. As well as further cuts in the leisure and library sector, and the support of the arts.