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The Minutes of the meeting held on 30th September 2020 having been circulated were signed as a correct record.
It was confirmed that no public questions had been received.
The Board considered the Minutes of the meetings of the Executive Board relevant to the Environment and Urban Renewal Policy and Performance Board.
RESOLVED: That the Minutes be received.
The Board considered a report of the Strategic Director, Enterprise, Community and Resources, which gave details of road traffic collision and casualty numbers within the Borough in the year 2019.
The Board was advised that Appendix A to the report set out full details of the numbers of traffic collisions and casualties in the year 2018, and compared these figures with those from previous years.
The latest figures (2019) for Halton could be summarised as follows:
· There were 183 road traffic collisions involving personal injury in Halton, 14 fewer than the year before, and a continuation of the overall general downward trend. These incidents resulted in 239 casualties, a 3% increase on the 2018 figures;
· A total of 31 killed or seriously injured (KSI) remained relatively low when compared to 10 years ago (41 in 2010). The figure for 2018 was 30;
· 28 of the casualties were classed as serious, with 3 fatalities (an increase of 1 compared to 2018)
· A total of 2 child serious injury (CKSI) which represented a decrease of 66% (compared to 6 in 2018).
· The numbers of people of all ages being slightly injured (SLI) was 208 (202 in 2018).
· A total of 23 collisions occurred on Mersey Gateway controlled roads, resulting in a total of 28 casualties, slightly higher than in 2018.
· Halton still remained on course to achieve its performance targets.
In addition, the report highlighted the work the Road Safety Team had undertaken in 2019/20 and the programme for 2021 which would continue to cover road traffic reduction schemes, road safety education, training and publicity.
Members also considered information on the road safety schemes undertaken in 2019/20 and the report outlined the planned works for 2020/21 which included:
· Improved pedestrian crossing facilities at Halton Lea, Runcorn
· Review of all school sites to ensure road layouts are appropriate, given the ongoing issues related to the Covid19 pandemic
· Improvements to side-junction layouts on Liverpool Road, Widnes following concerns raised regarding poor visibility
· Improvements to pedestrian crossing points at Dykin Road / Moorfield Road roundabout.
· Reconfiguration of road markings as part of wider improvement scheme on southern section of Ditchfield Road, Widnes.
· Major changes to route signage through Runcorn town centre following Runcorn de-linking works and associated changes to traffic flows
1) the overall progress made on casualty reduction in Halton over the past decade be noted; and
2) the road safety programme for 2021 be supported.
The Board considered a report of the Strategic Director Enterprise, Community and Resources, which sought views on the creation of a roadside memorials policy. A number of authorities had started to establish polices and protocol relating to the placement and removal of roadside floral tributes and other memorials placed at the scene of fatal road crashes and other fatalities adjacent to the highway. Adopted policies generally set a time period for the placement of flowers and other tributes and include protocols and arrangements for their removal and the return of non-perishable items to relatives. It was recognised that this was a sensitive and emotional issue.
It was noted that the Council had a legal duty to ensure that highways were fit for purpose and to make sure that public open spaces were free from debris. An example of a roadside memorials and tribute policy had been previously circulated to the Board as Appendix A.
RESOLVED: That the Board supported the need for a roadside memorial policy in Halton.
The Board was advised that the Metro Mayor had previously announced a £1m Town Centre Fund allocation for each of the Liverpool City local authority areas in summer 2018. The purpose of the fund was to stimulate plans for Town Centres that would generate a long term sustainable approach to revitalising the high street. In Halton it was agreed that the investment would be in the Halton Lea ward. An action plan had been agreed with the Combined Authority in February 2020, initially for delivery by the end of the calendar year however the programme had now been extended to 31st October 2021.
It was noted that the programme had nine projects and generated £601,875 of match funding in addition to the £1m. Members received details on the following nine work streams in the Halton Lea Town Centre Fund and the amount of funds allocated to each:
· Re-location of Halton Hospital Services;
· Third sector hub;
· Roof top garden;
· Culture HQ;
· Wellbeing hub;
· Community shop;
· The box grants; and
· Third sector grants.
RESOLVED: That the report be noted.
The Board received a report of the Strategic Director, Enterprise, Community and Resources, which outlined the Council position with regard to tackling fly posting. Fly posting was illegal and it was also unfair on those companies who chose to advertise legitimately. Fly posting also put an additional cost on the Local Authority and other landowners who had to remove fly posters. It also had a severe effect on the local environmental quality of the Borough and could act as an anti-social magnet that encouraged a social downward spiral and could lead to an increase in resident’s fear of crime.
The report proposed a week long ‘crackdown’ to raise awareness of the negative impacts of flyposting, confront and discourage the main perpetrators and improve the public realm of the Borough. The Council aimed to reduce fly posting throughout Halton through education and enforcement. In addition, a draft policy for fly posting prevention would be put together based on the principles outlined in the report and brought back to a future Board meeting.
Arising from the discussion, Members identified areas that could be targeted for enforcement, which included bridges, Halton Stadium, empty shops in the town centres and traffic lights.
1. a formal anti fly posting policy be drafted based on the principles set out in paragraphs 4.3 – 4.8; and
2. the activity set out in paragraph 4.9 be endorsed.