‘Outrage’ over cuts to grass cutting

Skegness Town Council is appealing to Lincolnshire County Council for more time to work out how they can get the grass cut this season. ANL-170602-150319001
Skegness Town Council is appealing to Lincolnshire County Council for more time to work out how they can get the grass cut this season. ANL-170602-150319001

Grass may have started to grow across Skegness but town councillors remain at a loss over who will foot the bill to get it cut before visitors arrive in the spring.

Councillors at last month’s meeting refused to accept the ‘fait accompli’ presented to them and add the estimated £50,000 cost to the precept to be met by residents.

Lincolnshire County Council axed amenity cutting from next year’s budget as part of its cost-cutting strategy and informed councils that verges other than for safety reasons alongside roadsides in rural areas would not be cut.

But in spite of talks with county council leaders, councillors remain adamant they were not told early enough to make arrangements for this year and are asking the county council to give them more time to get something sorted.

Coun Mark Anderson said: “It’s an outrage. How many jobs will be lost if holidaymakers decide not to come because of the way the town looks? We need to make our voices heard. There are people in this town who have not had a pay rise or are on benefits - they cannot afford to pay for grass cutting too.”

However, Coun Syd Dennis said: “It’s a bit of grass. It’ll get cut somehow. We just need to get the job done.”

Councillors asked town clerk Steve Larner to consider options on how the town council might undertake the work and report back at the March meeting. A letter is to be written to Lincolnshire County Council asking them to defer their decision, stating that although the council understands LCC are in a tough financial position, there is concern that LCC does not understand the consequential implications for the coastal and wider Lincolnshire economy.

It will also outline concerns over what the council believe to be a lack of proper consultation and an apparent unwillingness to try to find a solution early.