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Press Release - 06 August 2006

Robert Fisher replies to Elaine Turner after receiving her letter on 05 August 2006

Elaine Turner
Client Services Manager
Lincolnshire County Council
Technical Services Partnership
Witham Park House
Waterside South
Lincoln LN5 7JN

6 August 2006

Dear Elaine

YOUR REF: ET/BBEG/PMF
Dated 3 August 2006

Thank you for your letter dated 3 August 2006, received 5 August 2006. (Click here to read the letter)

We are pleased that you will be publishing these questions and answers on your project website – we will certainly be placing them on our BBEG website, as they seem to highlight several discrepancies between what we have been told before and what you are telling us now?

Question 2
At the meeting held with David Woods and the Transport Strategy team on 13 July 2006, I asked for a copy of the Contract between Lincolnshire County Council and Jacobs Babtie. His response was that we had it – referring to the Study Brief given to the Stakeholders Reference Group members. I stated in response that we wanted to see the actual Contract between the two parties, to confirm firstly the total cost of the Transport Study and secondly what restrictions/limitations had been imposed by Lincolnshire County Council.

For example, who decided the scope of the study, what was to be included and excluded? We certainly had no input into that decision. Nor do we believe did any Boston Borough Councillor? Why did Jacobs Babtie have to ask for more money to fund a “rat run” count when this should have been a priority and why was only one day sampled and not all the roads designated?

Had the ‘will’ been there to prove a good case for Boston, enough funds should have been made available to firstly do the Transport Study justice and secondly justify spending such a large sum of money – we still have not had it confirmed, but understand it amounts to approximately £400,000?

I’m sure Jacobs Babtie would not have entered into an agreement with Lincolnshire County Council without a formal Contract?

Question 3
At the Dock Link Road Inquiry, you told the Inquiry Inspector that funds could not be transferred. Your letter now states, “…if the monies were to be transferred…”

You are also now telling us that there is a time limit of December 2006 for placing of orders – just 4 months away.

Surely this highlights inaccuracies in what was said at the Dock Link Road Inquiry and demonstrates once again how Lincolnshire County Council have wasted valuable time in finding a solution to Boston’s urgent traffic congestion?

If EMDA funding was granted on the basis of economic regeneration it would not take much evidence to prove the case if the ‘will’ was there. If you are in any doubt please ask the retailers and businesses in Boston.

Question 4
Once again, you are now stating that a bypass could be built in sections, but pointing out that for cost reasons, it would be harder to demonstrate value for money if it were in fact to be built in sections.

We state again that Lincoln bypasses are being built in sections. If you are saying this is not value for money, then we certainly would object to these projects going ahead when more urgent congestion, pollution and safety issues need road prioritisation in Boston.

The designation of any proposed road as a bypass or distributor road is immaterial in the case of Boston. The route would follow the same path. The only road being crossed which could be left out of a bypass is the B1193 and traffic from this road could easily reach the junction on the A16. The costly stage, the A1121 to A16, could be built with the help of section 106 funding. The offer is on the table. Why is this not being pursued?

We would disagree with your statement that due to inflation, costs would be an issue to build a bypass in stages. Paying for the first section now would mean lower costs for the first section than waiting for 10 years and paying for the whole bypass at once.

The issue here is quite clearly you have one rule for Lincoln and another for Boston. This is simply not acceptable to us.


We look forward to receiving your response to our comments and a copy of the Contract between Lincolnshire County Council and Jacobs Babtie.

A copy of this letter will be given to the Local Government Ombudsman, who has assured us that an investigator will be assigned as soon as possible.

Yours sincerely

Robert Fisher
Boston Bypass & Economic Growth Pressure Group (BBEG)
www.bbeg.org.uk
06 August 2006

 

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