Fix your own potholes — council to rope in residents for a smoother ride

2011-04-01 00:00

ARE there too many potholes in your road?

Paving the way for a smoother ride for motorists, council has introduced a new by-law in which ratepayers will be responsible for cleaning the verges and fixing the potholes on the roads outside their residences and businesses.

Roads which have been pitted will now soon be in tip-top condition, in a move hailed as ingenious by civic-minded people.

In cases where residents are physically unable to patch their own potholes, they will be able to outsource the job for a fee via a council unit set up for this.

Leaving no stone unturned in their efforts to assist the public, the maintenance of verges too can be handed over for a set amount to be charged monthly on lights accounts.

For a fee, council will also be selling pothole repair kits for the general public to purchase.

Only those who can prove they are competent to complete the job will be allowed to use the DIY version.

Opting for this method to sort out the streets was the right choice, said municipal spokesperson Brian Zuma.

“Let’s band together to make the city a better place.”

When asked about the possibility of turf wars, in terms of who would be responsible for which pothole, Zuma said council would be mobilising a unit to divide the roads carefully in two, so there would be no confusion as to who would be responsible for which crater.

Even rural areas within the municipal area will be affected with farmers being held responsible for the potholes outside their properties.

“Great things can be achieved when residents and council work together for the betterment of the municipality,” said Zuma.

“Of course, we will have resistance to this initiative, but we urge residents to embrace it.”

The costs are expected to be in the region of R1 000 for a DIY pothole repair kit, R2 000 to outsource a pothole regardless of size, a monthly fee of R250 for verge maintenance and a punitive cost of R1 000 plus the outstanding remedial cost if the pothole or verge is not sorted out within a month.

Yards that are on panhandles will happily escape the effects of the new bylaws.

Opposition parties are expected to react to the initiative at the next council meeting, said Zuma.

“Until residents accept that we have to hold hands to mend the city, we will get nowhere.”

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