Fee to turn back on streetlights in Gainsborough is ‘unacceptable’

Street light
Street light

The streetlights in Gainsborough could be turned back on - but at a cost.

Scrutiny members at Lincolnshire County Council examined plans which would see parish councils, or an equivalent authority, able to make the decision for lights on behalf of their communities.

They will have to pay £300 per light if the work does not fall within a routine council maintenance programme.

However, if the proposal falls within existing council works, then it will cost the parish £150 per light.

Coun Trevor Young said: “As a councillor for the Gainsborough South West Ward I certainly feel that street lights need to be switched back on, we have seen a massive increase in parts of the ward in relation to crime and anti social behaviour.

“However Lincolnshire County Councils proposal suggesting a fixed fee for every light switched back on is ridiculous and totally unacceptable.

“What do residents pay council tax for and why is it other neighbouring authorities have not switched off their street lighting.

“Lincolnshire residents are getting a poor deal from Lincolnshire County Council.

“They have already offloaded grass cutting services onto the parish councils, what are they planning to additionally charge for next, education, road gritting, footpaths, potholes.”

Lights would also have to be switched on along entire roads, not just individually.

The county council controversially switched off more than half of the region’s 68,000 street lights in 2016 for part of the night in an effort to save the authority £1.7 million.