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County roads gritted on a priority basis

I WRITE regarding your editorial headlined ‘Freezing weather. Let’s get our priorities in order’ (December 29).

It implies there is some brinkmanship at play in relation to response to weather conditions over the Christmas period. This is not the case, and will never be the case. Roads in Cork county are gritted on a priority basis with priority given to national primary and secondary routes. Resources are always applied on a priority basis.

You confuse the issue of funding for non-national roads with the available overtime budget which has been severely curtailed, as reported recently in the council’s budget for 2010.

The level of funding for non-national roads maintenance has reduced in 2009 and, in commenting to your reporter, I drew attention to my concern that the condition of roads would deteriorate over the next 18 months following such severe weather.

Overtime budgets, while curtailed, will always be available to respond to emergency situations. The response to the recent flooding events across Cork county confirm this to be the case.

Cork County Council is responsible for approx 12,000km of non-national roads and it is not reasonable to expect that, within available resources, they can all be prioritised.

There is no brinkmanship at play but simply applying resources on a priority basis.

Martin Riordan

Cork County Manager

Couny Hall



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