Proposed cut to gritting budget rejected by SIC committee

Cuts to the SIC’s gritting efforts have been rejected by a council committee amid concerns the move to save £50,000 would harm communities

Two of the new council gritters.

Reducing the number of gritters and routes had been on the cards ahead of a “roads gritting review”.

But members of the council’s environment and transport committee scrapped the savings target in Tuesday morning’s budget approval meeting.

Committee chairman Ryan Thomson told colleagues “the last thing we need” is to reduce the number of gritters and routes, citing issues with the service this winter.

Originally, Mr Thomson proposed that the gritting review should be abandoned.

However, following contributions from Shetland South representative George Smith and Shetland West member Steven Coutts, a decision was made that the review should go ahead – but without a savings target.

Mr Smith said the review would allow possible improvements to the gritting service to be identified. He added that it might even lead to more money being devoted to gritting.

During the discussion, Robbie McGregor said: “I feel very strongly that reducing the budget is not where I want to go. I am looking at increasing the services…”

The committee ultimately gave their backing to the proposed budgets for infrastructure services (£24.9 million ) and transport planning (£6 million).


Add Your Comment
  • David Spence

    • February 6th, 2018 21:11

    The irony of the story is bringing to light how mild our winters have become, and the fact climate change is happening due to human activity.

    This will have great consequences within our life time if not the next generation, and the greatest threat to Shetland will not be the cold but flooding on a huge scale.

    People may scoff and criticise the huge amount of scientific evidence pointing to human activity causing climate change, but I would rather act on this, than our politicians who are most likely being bribed by the industries causing the pollution in the first place. Agriculture causes 6 times more pollution than all of transportation put together, and we do nothing about this.

    If the models of climate change are accurate, Europe will be plunged into another ice-age. Sea levels will rise by approximately 7 – 10 metres (hence the flooding).

    It is speculated the ice at the North Pole (which is sea based) will be gone by the year 2050, this will have dramatic affects on ocean currents and thermal air streams. This will force to jet stream further south, thus becoming much colder.

  • Steven Jarmson

    • February 11th, 2018 12:40

    Cut costs by applying the same rules to Lerwick as the rest of Shetland gets.
    Stop gritting “non essential” roads.
    Why is Westerloch gritted? Stanley Hill gets gritted right into the residential parking areas, but very seriously dangerous roads in the country don’t get gritted unless they have a school or medical centre on their route or are part of a bus route.
    I’ve never understood why every road in Lerwick is gritted. There’s nothing in Lerwick that isn’t in walking distance of another part.
    Country residents actually need to have safe access to roads, many of which do not get gritted.
    Just put piles of grit at the roadside, as happens in many country areas.


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