Tuesday, 9 September 2014

A fruitful summer for Better Roads and Operation Watershed


This has been a really good summer, with plenty of sunshine, which brings everyone out and of course visitors to West Sussex to enjoy all its delights, all of which is very good for the local economy.

Although  we have had quite a few changes at County Hall over the last few months, it is very much business as usual. This good weather has allowed us to push ahead with our Better Roads Programme and I'm really pleased to say that we are well ahead of this year's planned programme. To date:

 
  • 271 sites across West Sussex have been repaired, the equivalent of 49% of the entire programme; nearly £7.2m of the £30m budget has been spent;

  • 369,761 square metres of road surface has been repaired; and almost 100% of material removed during the work has been recycled.

The more roads we can repair now the better position we will be in for the winter when the weather is bound to take a turn for the worse.

But it is just not the Better Roads Programme that's been doing so well over these lovely last few months.  During the summer I have been out to look at an Operation Watershed project to see how that has been progressing. Although we are in the second year of Operation Watershed, there continues to be a real interest in Operation Watershed Grant Funds and I am pleased to say there is still money available.

We launched Operation Watershed in 2014 following the floods of the previous two years. It was an £8.5million fund that was used to carry out road and drainage repair works across the county but that also invited communities to bid to it to fund projects and schemes that would help protect them against future flooding.

Operation Watershed has been really successful. It has brought communities together who know about a local flood problem and would like to sort it out and resolved it to the benefit of the community at large. It is the local knowledge that is so important and that in turn has helped the County Council with more detailed localised information which, as the lead flood authority, has been really helpful.

One of our key policies is helping people to help themselves - and Operation Watershed does exactly that.

I'm delighted to see it going from strength to strength.

Best wishes,
 

 

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