Potholes were yet again a hot topic at Bucks’s county council’s annual debate, but motorists were told there isn’t enough money to fix all the roads.
Many Twitter questions submitted by the public challenged the panel on the pothole-ridden roads, but council leader Martin Tett said expectations need to be managed.
He said: “The reality is most residents judge us, rightly or wrongly, on the state of our roads. Can they drive to work? They’re a key touchstone, and if we do well on that they think we’re doing well on everything else, and if we do badly on that they think we run a rubbish show everywhere.
“But it’s a bit like bringing peace to the Middle East, and the reality is that the cost of resurfacing every road is just astronomic.
“The real solution is not to fix the potholes, but to resurface all the roads, and without funding from central government it’s just not possible.”
Mr Tett blamed the effects of the winter months on the state of the roads, saying that it was not just wet weather and frost causing problems on top, but the water levels underground breaking up the tarmac from underneath.
He said: “We filled 17,000 potholes last year and resurfaced 400 roads. We’re hoping to spend a minimum of £60 million in the next four years, but it’s not going to fix every pothole.
Mr Tett went on to say that many residents don’t care about or understand the services ticking away behind the scenes and eating up large chunks of the budget, including children’s services, education, child safeguarding and social care.
He said: “What actually eats up 60% of our budget and causes us all the pain, are the things that the vast majority of our residents don’t have much visibility of.
“I have to manage expectations, but we will do our very best with the funding we have got.”