As the County Council sets its budget for the coming year this Wednesday 14 February, the main opposition group is bidding to target cash at roads and footways and to make mental health issues more of a priority.
“These are forward-looking ideas inspired by the people of our county. We have identified areas where we can really target the things people care about whilst doing our bit for the environment,” said Lib Dem Group Leader Cllr Paul Hodgkinson (Bourton & Northleach).
“We are proposing a major investment in footways and cycleways to make them fit for purpose. Too many of our pavements are cracked and broken which cause real hazards for pedestrians. We also oppose the Conservative cut in funding to local roads schemes (‘Highways Local’) and want this to be kept.
“In addition to this, we are tackling the huge backlog in dealing with changes to public rights of way in rural areas whilst investing in more charging points for electric vehicles so we can make our air cleaner.”
Cllr Jeremy Hilton (Kingsholm & Wotton), Lib Dem Finance Spokesperson, will be seconding the proposals on Wednesday: “We believe that the Tory cut of 10% to mental health spending within the Council’s public health budget is distressing as it impacts on the vulnerable. We call for this to be reversed immediately and for two areas of real concern to be improved – reducing self-harm and tackling domestic abuse. Both of these things happen in our county all too often and we want to tackle them.”
“We have looked at the budget being put forward by the Council’s administration and feel it can be improved. We have fully costed these budget pledges and I hope they will be welcomed by the people of Gloucestershire who want to see their council listening to what they want, whilst controlling its spending after huge Government funding cuts.”