Bigger budgets, better roads to sway councils

By: Jason Whittaker


Road deterioration and council budgets are the two key reasons the Municipal Association of Victoria (MAV) is officially opposed to

Road deterioration and council budgets are the two key reasons the Municipal Association of Victoria (MAV) is officially opposed to b-doubles and b-triples on council roads.

President of the MAV Dick Gross says "we are not unilaterally opposed to b-doubles and b-triples" but says the impact the extra weight will inflict on road surfaces and the cost to repair the damage is a major concern for all councils.

"We understand that [heavy vehicles] make the freight task less of an intrusion and more efficient but it does depend on where and when they are travelling," he says.

Gross’ comments follow the MAV’s announcement of their policy decision on October 10, stating it was opposed to clearway times being extended.

He says the big issues lie in safety in urban settings and the Roads to Recovery program "isn’t necessarily the pot of money that would help with the deterioration of local roads".

Gross claims the program is not helping councils maintain their roads.

He says that they are now attempting to start a dialogue with the Federal Government to make sure costs are covered before they move forward with b-doubles, b-triples and High Performance Vehicles.

"This is about consultation and allowing local government to craft rules that protect our interests and I have to say that it didn’t sound like it [Roads to Recovery] was relevant," Gross says.

"Just because there is some financial support, which we appreciate, it is nothing compared to what we would need to spend [if heavier vehicles were bound for council roads]."

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