Pothole cash plea

Councillor Gordon Matheson, who is the city council leader, has pleaded to the Scottish Government for extra cash to tackle the pothole crisis.

Despite diverting 800,000 from planned resurfacing schemes to emergency pothole repair, councillor Matheson believes the council needs additional support.

Glasgow's leader told The Extra:"The potential damage is even worse than last year. The extreme and lasting low temperatures from November into the new year have exacerbated every minor defect on our network.

"The damaged caused by this is frustrating for the council, and for motorists — but the real threat is to jobs and the economy, because thousands of businesses rely on our network".

The councillor also pinpointed where he believes the money could comes from.

He added: "After last winter, Alistair Darling created a pothole fund.

"In England, money went straight to councils, but Scottish authorities were left to handle repairs alone.

"Alex Salmond and Keith Brown need to account for where Scotland's share went".

East Renfrewshire Council is also appealing for extra funding too — despite having already earmarked 420,000 to throw at the pothole problem.

The final bill could be even higher as the council revealed to The Extra that it will "explore options" to gain further funds to protect the roads against future defects.

ERC leader Jim Fletcher said: "Every Scottish council is in the same position following this unprecedented period of adverse weather.

"We'll be looking at exactly the cost to us and will be engaging with the Scottish government through our membership of CoSLA".

A spokesman at Holyroodconfirmed Scottish ministers are considering the possibility of releasing more cash to help fund overdue repairs.

He told The Extra: "Last year, we made available an extra 5 million for councils on top of the almost 12 billion in funding for local authorities this year.

"Through dialogue with local government we are

aware of the resource pressures councils are facing in

responding to the severe weather.

"Ministers have made clear that the Scottish government would be prepared to consider helping councils to offset extra costs incurred".

Simon Douglas, director of AA Insurance, believes local authorities face "very difficult choices on the roads they prioritise for repair.

" While they may fix dangerous potholes, many are likely to go unrepaired.

"We expect a big surge in claims for damage to wheels, suspension and bodywork such as wings and sills"....