THE Government has this morning announced £9.5m of funding to repair pothole-ridden roads in the North-East and North Yorkshire.
The Transport Secretary said the funding was an exceptional payment from £183.5m of extra funding the Government has made available to help with repairs following the wettest winter on record.
Patrick McLoughlin said this was enough to repair an extra 3.3 million potholes.
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Mr McLoughlin said: “Damage to roads causes misery for drivers and local communities and the severe weather over the last few months has made the problem worse.
“This extra money will help make a real difference to the millions of road users and residents across the north east who rely on local roads, giving them safer and smoother journeys.”
The councils receiving funding are:
• Darlington £178,442
• Durham £1,241,952
• Gateshead £294,795
• Hartlepool £131,268
• Middlesbrough £140,529
• Newcastle £282,923
• North Yorkshire £3,223,589
• North Tyneside £251,071
• Northumberland £2,736,241
• Redcar and Cleveland £263,488
• South Tyneside £172,647
• Stockton-on-Tees £258,308
• Sunderland £346,608
Shadow transport minister Richard Burden warned the cash would do little to ease the condition of the roads, adding there was a £10bn backlog in the repair programme.
Speaking in the Commons, Mr Burden told Mr McLoughlin: "Traffic jams cost UK motorists 30 hours each last year, often made worse by there being a £10bn backlog in the road repair programme.
"And when local road maintenance was cut by nearly a sixth between 2010 and 2013, are you surprised that the Chancellors announcment yesterday of a potholes challenge competition has hardly got many motorists shouting bingo today.
Mr McLoughlin replied: "I'm very sorry you take that kind of point because I don't know whether you can commit from (Mr Balls) the kind of investments that we're putting into the road infrastructure in this country.
"Because as I understand it, you're not allowed to make any commitments whatsoever.
"So I'm very glad that not only yesterday did (Mr Osborne) announce an extra £200m to invest in our roads, but also later today I will be announcing the allocation of the £140m that I announced a few weeks ago to all local authorities.
"And I hope they will use that £140m along with the £200m done yesterday to do significant improvements on our roads."
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