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Councils call for power to fine utility companies for road works

Local authorities are calling for tough new powers to tackle ‘rush hour gridlock’ caused by utility companies digging up roads.

The Local Government Association (LGA) has requested the government make it easier for councils to introduce lane rental schemes without the requirement to get approval from the secretary of state for transport.

The lane rental scheme means utility companies, such as gas, water and cable providers, are charged a daily rate for work carried out on key congested roads during busy periods.

The LGA argued the scheme would incentivise these companies to finish work faster and the extra revenue raised would fund measures designed to help reduce future road works disruption.

Transport for London (TfL) and Kent County Council currently are the only organisations granted approval to run lane rental schemes and, the LGA claimed, it has

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